I only caught one production for “review” on the weekend …
But it was a winner in every aspect of “live” theatre!
A spellbinding, mind teasing, highly involving evening of theater looking at “love … obsession … and payback.” Deliciously Directed by David Trainer, and flawlessly performed by a trio of fine actors, this play is a titillating theatrical journey for the audience. A darkly humorous, and deviously clever story plays out … as we become involved with the characters’ connections. A brilliant and eventually revealing emotional thriller unfolds, ingeniously connecting these characters’ deeply rooted involvements, in the end. On the subject of classic and renowned playwrights of generations ago … I must admit to little knowledge. This “mind teasing” adaptation of noted Swedish writer, August Strindberg’s script, written in 1889, has been brilliantly revised, in a new version by the highly regarded, and award winning playwright, David Greig. The play opens on Adolph, an artist admiring his recently completed sculpture of a woman, in the lounge of a seaside hotel in Sweden. As he awaits the return of his wife Tekla, he is visited by Gustaf, an eerily unexpected stranger … who will change his life forever. The scenes between Adolf (a brilliantly heartfelt Burt Grinstead) and Gustav (the always mesmerizing Jack Stehlin) are mind-bendingly magical! Both actors give multi-faceted performances! Spellbinding and impeccably timed! In Act II, we meet Tekla … a high spirited, flirtatious, and self-involved “diva” of the period, played with “femme fatale” perfection, by Heather Anne Prete. This trio of captivating depictions held the mesmerized audience captive, as the story reveals many dark secrets. The gorgeous set by Thomas A. Walsh, and classy period costumes, by Merrily Murray-Walsh, perfectly set the vintage tone. Ron Klier’s sound and Nicholas Davidson’s lighting are also worthy of mention. My press sheet stated: “This toxic triangle is a psychological thriller … Sexy, savage, darkly comical and very modern. A take on the battle of the sexes….” It is all of that … and more. A deeply involving and saucily revealing story … I, and the entire mesmerized audience, were transfixed from start to the unexpected finish! For a highly entertaining and rewarding theatrical experience … do not miss this fine production! Running thru’ Dec. 15 at The Odyssey Theatre located at 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd. in Los Angeles. For seats call (310) 477-2055 ext. 2 or visit odysseytheatre.com.
As always … I encourage my readers to support L.A. theater! In a city bursting with talented actors, writers, directors, costumers, and technical “mood setters” … we are so lucky to have the diverse opportunity to be part of their “visions.” A wonderful opportunity for us to peer into all sides of life … while honoring the talent and hard work of gifted artists who “dare to dream” … Try it, you’ll like it!