Orbiting Astral Bodies

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Philip Orazio (Allen) and Andrea Arvanigian (Claire) in “Orbiting Astral Bodies.” <br>(c) Andrew P. Gutierrez Photography

Philip Orazio (Allen) and Andrea Arvanigian (Claire) in
“Orbiting Astral Bodies.”
(c) Andrew P. Gutierrez Photography

There is a sublime beauty of the solar system, for that it operates with delicate precision, yet it is gigantic, cold, and unforgiving. We marvel at the complexity of each planet revolving around a star, our sun. This star and her children planets also revolve in a galaxy. Each planet is independent, but relies on the others for continual rotation. Orbiting Astral Bodies explores the burden dependence can bring by contrasting the freedom and loneliness that self-reliance offers.

There is unrest in the universe — our moon (Michelle Holmes) has become weary of being our celestial twin and decides to depart to uncharted territory and adventure. Warren (Austin Hillebrecht) wants to tag along to extend his life. Mark (Ethan Leaverton), a fanatical environmentalist, is so opposed of the moon’s plan to leave that he literally chains her to the earth. Meanwhile, Mark’s sister Gillian (a luminous Julia Max) escapes life’s ferocity by building a cocoon for herself as she enables her roommate Claire (a radiant Andrea Arvanigian) to gorge on sleeping pills so she can meet her paramour Allen (Philip Orazio) in her dreams.

Each player has their own methods of withdrawal and escape, as they are unhappy with their lot in life. It takes an event of such magnitude and severity to wake them to their true potentiality.

The stage is sparse, yet sparkles. Nathan Gregorski’s script is delightfully different from the normal constraints of typical structure. Director Alyse M. Castillo infuses the show with a quiet vibrancy. The show reminds us that although we may be trapped by circumstance, it can be diverted with courage, boldness, and the love of the unknown. Recommended.

Orbiting Astral Bodies runs through Dec. 15 at The Met Theatre located at 1089 N. Oxford Dr. in Los Angeles. For tickets call (818) 861-9832 or visit plays411.net/astral.

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