Write Act Repertory Theatre outdoes itself yet again in an original collection of short plays, Out of the Box. The four one-acts are poignant and passionate portrayals of relationships broken yet still buoyant. The first one act, Marty’s Bromance, by Judith Allen, was a piece about “love on the rocks,” by talented actors Sherrie Lewandowski, Tom Katsis and Vince Palmieri, playing “seasoned” adults, desiring second chances and resurrections of love and careers re-kindled. A Fine Line, written by and starring Marina Palmier, along with Michael Hegedus, focuses on the seamy and dreamy side of life for an acting couple on set. Much like The Player, this vignette will resonate with those in the business, with inside jokes and innuendos. The Hat, by Elayne Heilveil, starring Bette Smith and Scott Blair, was like a shot of Tennessee Williams: a poetic dialogue between an older woman, groping for fulfillment, and a young would-be suitor who’s hoping for a date and proposal that will probably never happen. The chance meeting between these two characters contains dialogue straight out of the most poetic and prolific of playwrights, the caliber of Williams or Eugene O’Neill.
The final scene, Chili Con Carnage, by Ann L. Gibbs, starring Nancy Lantis and Jamie Sowers, is like Sweeney Todd, done Southern style. Rickie Jean (Sowers) keeps talking about putting animals and people in her recipes; meanwhile she’s almost eviscerated by her abusive husband. Her vixen Hollywood mom (Lantis) is all primped up and pouty, while her daughter (Sowers) looks like a ragged, battered piece of toast — hard to believe they are flesh and blood. Overall, these one-acts are poignant portrayals of attempted love, and family relations. The choice of music and lyrics was perfectly chosen to fit each theme. Playwright, actress and publicist Marina Palmier is an amazing explosion of theatrical brilliance.
Out of the Box runs May 9, 10 and 11 at 7:30 p.m. The Write Act Repertory is located at 6128 Yucca St. in Hollywood. For ticket information, visit www.writeactrep.org or call (323) 469-3113.