Edgy, Excellent, ‘Eclectica!’

From left, Karen May, Gary Werntz, Jake Epstine and David Doman in “Eclectica-” An Evening of Plays.

An anthology of short stories is often more creative and diverse than a single plot novel. Such is the case with Michael Sadler’s Eclectica- An Evening of Plays. Each is a construction of clever material, which is exactly what I expect of Write Act Repertory. This compilation of drama and comedy showcases L.A.‘s finest talent.

In Twilight Zone style, Meteor centers on a couple who find themselves facing unforeseen circumstances. They reveal innermost secrets; The O’Henry twist is that a catastrophe may never come to pass. Romancing The Scone follows two young lonely hearts on a blind date. An older coffeehouse patron, brilliantly played by Gary Werntz, intervenes, guiding their connection. Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is so relevant to today’s political climate as a pithy portrayal of gays in the military. Stanley, played by Marc McHone, is a young mentally disabled man, finding comfort in building birdcages and setting them free, symbolic of the independence he desperately seeks.

The Thinkers, possibly the most compelling piece, touches on the simple yet deep ironies of life. In a swift role reversal, the nerdy assistant Igor (Ben Glass) becomes the master of Thornwell (David Wells). The world turns topsy-turvy, as the weakest link is invariably the strongest. Restore Point reveals our immersion in the computer/digital world versus face to face interactions, and how one glitch can set everything off, until one reboots and starts anew. Druler, a morality butler of sorts, tries to stop the rivalry of two elderly sisters, encouraging them to be family rather than dueling enemies.

Each unique one act imparts its own wisdom.

The show, staged at the Write Act Repertory Theatre, 6128 Yucca, runs at 8 p.m. every Thursday, Friday and Saturday through November 13. For more information, visit www.writeactrep.org.

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