Female Playwrights at the Write Act: From Page to Stage
With material that I consider the “HBO of theatre,” the Write Act Repertory outdoes itself with Interior Designs, a festival of short plays/one acts written and showcased by female playwrights from the Los Angeles area. The first play, Scrabble, by Judith Allen, centers around two women, set in the afterlife, reflecting on their lives and loves, as they prepare to enter the pearly gates. Many shows on stage and screen, i.e. Heaven Can Wait, feature this particular theme, and the two actresses (Jinny Wilcott and Elisabeth Noone) impeccably portray their characters with true finesse and credibility, weaving through echoes of their past, all the while drinking Irish whiskey over their beloved pastime, Scrabble.
Jesse Rode a Bike Today, by Sara Israel, is a piece where time and space stand still, as a story unfolds about Jesse, a young man with special needs, which is shared by his family and neighbors who love him dearly. The scene takes place in “Anytown, USA,” where amidst the humdrum of a life that seemingly leads to nowhere, the simple yet monumental act of a child getting on a bike (usually one of the most rudimentary steps in a child’s physical development), becomes an awe-inspiring act, and in this case, noble and extolled by all, in the surrounding village.
I Will If You Will, written by Ashley Taylor, and directed by the exceedingly talented Michael Sadler, begins with an intimate conversation between husband and wife in their bedroom over a bottle of tequila, the elixir of open conversation, as it were, and so opens up a Pandora’s Box of secrets and hidden yearnings. Their modern quandaries and dilemmas make them question if they could possibly find better match mates…with an O’Henry ending, a true twist of fate.
Write Act Repertory’s Interior Designs reveals ulterior motives in Hit Man, a one act play written by Bonnie Hallman, directed by Michael Eiden, and starring Jamie Sowers and Carlos Joseph. Much like a contrived soap opera or prime time crime drama, it’s the typical plot of one scheming a murder/revenge, yet the victim is actually the perpetrator. In The Love Letter, written by Marina Gonzalez Palmier, directed by Richard Pierce, and starring Jackie Mariott and Corey Jones, a married couple proves that love can indeed conquer all, even in cyberspace. Love letters, words of the heart, whether on good old fashioned pen and paper or modern day e-mail, are the strength and salvation of heart to heart interactions. A true test of trust is sharing one’s sacred password, all in the name of love.
Symbolic works of art adorn the stage, each picture a key element of each show, with each theme a slice of life, as we vicariously live through each creative scenario.
Interior Designs runs through August 28 on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 4 p.m. The Write Act Repertory is located at 6128 Yucca St. For more information, visit www.writeactrep.org.