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Limelight Review - February 2019

Jackie Miesle, Editor

Art Kibby, Distribution


 

Save the Date!Feb2019 blog image

Mariemont Players Spring General Membership Meeting

Date: Saturday, April 6, 2019

Time: 6:00pm

Location: Walton Creek Theate - 4101 Walton Creek Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45227

Main course (fried chicken) and drinks will be provided. Please bring a salad, side dish or dessert to share. Evite to come.


Cast Announcement - Out of Sterno

We are excited to announce the cast of our May show, Out of Sterno by Deborah Zoe Laufer:

Dotty – Patricia Mullins

Hamel – Darren Lee

Zena – Elizabeth Malloy

Dan – Bill Hartnett

Directed by Dan Maloney, performances run May 10-26

Synopsis

Dotty's life in Sterno with her husband Hamel is absolutely perfect! It's a fairy tale, it really is. True, in their seven years of marriage Hamel has forbidden her to leave their tiny apartment or speak to anyone, but Dotty is so very happy to spend her days watching video re-enactments of the day they first met. When a phone call from a mysterious woman threatens to tear her world asunder, Dotty must venture out into the vast city of Sterno, and try to discover what it is to be a "real" woman.

Out of Sterno is a coming-of-age play in an Alice in Wonderland world. It explores the triumph and heartbreak of growing up and the contradictory societal pressures women face just trying to make it across town.

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Limelight Review - January, 2019

Jackie Miesle, Editor

Art Kibby, Distribution

 

Happy New Year!

Thank you for a wonderful 2018! We look forward to a great 2019 with you.

 

Sound System Takes Center Stage

By Art Kibby

Forest GoodwinThanks to MPI member Forest Goodwin and our MPI Board, we have greatly expanded the capabilities of our audio system. We recently purchased a Behringer XAir audio mixer that uses a 10” tablet to control the input and output of our dedicated audio laptop computer. The wonderful thing about this system is it allows us to control the levels of each of our 6 speakers independently. Want to hear a storm approaching from the back of the auditorium, rumbling around to stage right? No problem.

The tablet connects to the mixer wirelessly, so, for example, the sound designer can set his levels from the auditorium – hearing exactly what the audience will hear. The system is customizable, so the display will show our particular setup, and can be saved for each show. The mixer is capable of 18 inputs for future expansion.

Not only that, but we just purchased and Forest installed two Shure wireless mic systems. The half-rack receivers are mounted in the audio tower in the loft, with a hand mic linked to each. The mics use rechargeable batteries that can power each condensor mic for up to 16 hours when fully charged. Forrest has offered to train any sound person on this equipment on a scheduled basis.

Above image: Forest Goodwin shows our two new wireless mics and the tablet that controls the mixer. The wireless receivers are in the rack bottom right.

 

Upcoming Auditions

Mariemont Players and director Dan Maloney announce auditions for Out of Sterno

by Deborah Zoe Laufer.

Audition Dates/Times:

7 PM Sunday, January 13th

7 PM Monday, January 14th

Location:

4101 Walton Creek Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45227

Performance Dates:

May 10-26

Synopsis

Dotty's life in Sterno with her husband Hamel is absolutely perfect! It's a fairy tale, it really is. True, in their seven years of marriage Hamel has forbidden her to leave their tiny apartment or speak to anyone, but Dotty is so very happy to spend her days watching video re-enactments of the day they first met. When a phone call from a mysterious woman threatens to tear her world asunder, Dotty must venture out into the vast city of Sterno, and try to discover what it is to be a "real" woman.

Out of Sterno is a coming-of-age play in an Alice in Wonderland world. It explores the triumph and heartbreak of growing up and the contradictory societal pressures women face just trying to make it across town.

Characters

Dotty – 20’s. Childlike and loving and hopeful, bursting with intense enthusiasm for everything. She refuses to think ill of anyone.

Hamel – 30’s-40’s. Dotty’s thuggish husband. Very very very very not smart. Loves his wife, needs her for everything, but is prey to other urges. Much more stupefied than angry or threatening.

Zena – 30’s-40’s. The proprietress of Zena’s Beauty Emporium. Miss Triboro Area for two years running. Tough as nails.

Dan – Magically transforms himself into every other character in the play including: Delivery Man, Taxi Driver, Waiter, Mrs. Cuthbert, Mrs. Peabody, Barb, Sallie Mae, Man on the Bus.

Please note: ages listed are stage ages. Actors auditioning can be older/younger in real life, but they have to believably be able to play the ages listed in the script. 

Rehearsals will begin around the middle of March and will be determined by the availability of the cast. Please bring known conflicts from March 18th to May 26th. Please note, there is a 2 PM performance on Mother’s Day – Sunday, May 12th.

Resumes and head shots are appreciated but not required. For more information or to review the script, contact director Dan Maloney at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Current Show

Three Bags Full opens January 11!

Don’t miss Mariemont Players’ January production, Three Bags Full !

Three Bags Full is a bright, French farce which tells the tale of a greedy merchant who finds himself snookered into being a matchmaker for his two daughters – one the child of his wife and the other, the maid’s.

Three Bags Full is directed by Becky Mullins and runs January 11-27, 2019.

For tickets, call Betsy at 513-684-1236 or purchase tickets online.

 

All Around Town

  • Dee Anne Bryll will play Sunny in the Falcon Theatre production of The Exonerated. Performance dates: January 25-February 9, 2019.
  • Liz Taylor will perform in the chorus of the Cincinnati Music Theatre Studio Series production of “The Musical of Musicals: The Musical!” Performance dates: February 8, 9, 15 and 16, 2019.
  • Patricia Mullins will play a number of roles in the Village Players production of Women Playing Hamlet. Performance dates: February 15-23, 2019.
  • Jerry Wiesenhahn is directing the Footlighters Inc. production of First Date. Performance dates: Feb. 14-March 2, 2019.
  • Jim Waldfogle is directing the Beechmont Players production of Father of the Bride. Performance dates: Feb. 15-23, 2019.
  • Linda Callahan will play Gingy in The Drama Workshop’s production of Love, Loss, and What I Wore. Performance dates: February 22-March 10, 2019.
  • Liz Taylor has been cast in The Drama Workshop’s production of Working. Performance dates: May 3-19, 2019
  • Jackie Miesle will play Liz in the Footlighters Inc. production of Chicago. Performance dates: May 9-25, 2019.
  • Samantha Toberman will perform in the ensemble of the Cincinnati Music Theatre production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Performance dates: May 10-18, 2019.

 

December, 2018 Play Reading Report

By Anna Nixon        

A great turn-out this evening for our annual festive get-together. Everyone brought a delicious variety of dishes and, with Joyce’s hot mulled wine, we were happy!

We read and enjoyed a David Auburn play,“Lost Lake” with a cast of two – a man, Hogan and a woman, Veronica. Since there were five acts and five reading couples this worked out very well.

Readers were: Laura HovlandChessie VigranBill HartnettJoyce and Art KibbyFred RothzeidLinda CallahanBarbara BurkeJan CostelloKaren ZauggJohn Nixon and yours truly.

The January reading will on Tuesday, January 15th at 7.30 pm.

 

Membership

MPI Membership Renewal – Please stay and play with us for another year!

The 2018-2019 membership year began July 1st and we hope you will renew! If you haven’t sent your renewal ($15 for individual or $25 for family), please do so as soon as possible so you can continue to receive the Limelight Review, party invitations, and other news! See the membership form for more information.

 

More Fun Than Bowling - An Excellent Interpretation of a Fine Script

Lobby Display: “The lobby display really captured the theme of the show and displayed a deep level of dramaturgy I rarely have the good fortune of witnessing.”

Pre-Show: “Initially I figured [the songs] were foreshadowing the themes of the show but after the first act I realized they were also suggesting the time of the1980s without going full bore. Each song felt like it was chosen on its individual merit versus chart-toppers or songs so quintessentially 80s that they are permanently stuck there.”

Set Design, Décor, Construction: “The real tree “sections” creating the upstage trunks were very visually appealing and the black flats did a fine job suggesting the continuation of the world beyond our walls.” “The raked stage was an excellent solution to the necessities of the “gravesite action,” and didn’t appear to bother the actors at all.” “The final product greatly reflected the designer’s intent. The grave entrance was undetectable. The solid construction reinforced us being “outdoors.”” “The set very much appeared to reflect a strong collaboration between the designer, carpenters, and décor team.”

Lighting Design & Execution: “The lighting design did a great job of supporting the outdoor locations and also isolating the non-cemetery courtship moments of Jake, Lois, and Loretta. The cues were subtle and highly effective.”

Sound Design & Execution: “All the sound effects were timely and appropriate and added to the world of the play, especially the background to Jake’s monologues. The live bicycle bell added a lively spirit to the presence of Molly.”

Special Effects: “First off, the “bowling pin-wheels”  which started spinning by themselves, was very well executed and happened on cue every time.  Secondly, Jake coming up through the ground at the top of the show was a surprise!  I’m not quite sure how that was pulled off, but what a way to make an entrance!  Very well done!”

Costume Design: “The costumes were very effective in expressing the 80s without garnering too much attention. Molly’s “I love NY” tee, the high waisted jeans, faded denim, overalls, and bowling shirts were tastefully 80s in a way they’d be sought after in a vintage clothing store now. I’ve seen too many productions set in the 80s where the costume designer didn’t use enough restraint and it resulted in the clothing upstaging the action.  This was not the case and while the costumes suggested a time, the styles still permitted the story to have a universal quality.”

Make-Up & Hair Design: “Loretta’s crimped side ponytail was fitting of both the time and her youth. Lois’ hair was very fitting of her character for the performance”

Properties: “The bicycle especially was very well selected as it plays an important part in the story.  I also appreciated the flowers used for planting at Lois and Loretta’s graves as well as Mr. Dyson’s briefcase with the handcuff.  Not to mention his sack lunch which he actually ate on stage!”

Producer: “The show ran extremely smoothly.  I never noticed a dropped line, or even a hesitation, indicating a high level of rehearsal and professionalism.  I was impressed with all the technical elements under the producers’ control.”

Acting:

PAT KRAMER as Jake: “Mr. Kramer’s characterization of Jake was very subtle and it was easy to tell what kind of man he was: obsessive about bowling, yet somewhat distant from his daughter and other people in his life while putting on a good-natured front.” “Patrick Kramer played Jake as a fascinating divorcee and widower. He gave a high energy performance and great depth to this otherwise goofy “serial monogamist.” He was engaging, lively, and owned his serious moments very well. He was relatable as a father, a husband, and the good guy you know who has all the bad luck. His stories were engaging and his comedic timing was quite good.”

JACKIE MIESLE as Molly: “I found Molly to be a perfectly rounded character from her generally perky attitude to her serious emotional moment while reading her mother’s letter.  All of these were very well played and made me really feel for her upon learning of her mother’s death and then deciding to bury the bicycle.” “Jackie Miesle played an engaging Molly with a lot of youthful high energy. She was sweet, supportive, and displayed a lot of love for her dad and “moms.” The bicycle bits seemed well rehearsed enough to appear effortless. Her character lightened the mood and warmed the hearts of the audience.”

LIZ TAYLOR as Lois: “Lois’ Naked Pastor in the Pick-up story was one of the highlights of the play for me!” “Elizabeth Leigh Taylorbrought depth and life experience to the character of Lois. Her comic timing was excellent and the audience thoroughly enjoyed her telling of the truck story.” “Her reaction to Jake’s rather unconventional wooing was perfect.”

NATASHA BOECKMANN as Loretta: “Natasha Boeckman played a kind and thoughtful Loretta. While young and fun, her character also possessed a demure quality. She seemed genuinely concerned with the balance of the widower and his daughter. Her character was convincing in just as much of the nonverbals as the dialogue.” “I really bought her performance, both as friend to Lois and Molly and as Jake’s wife.  Very natural and believable.”

MARK METZNER as Mr. Dyson: Mr. Metzner was on stage and in character for almost the entire show.  Even when lurking in the shadows or behind trees, he kept it up.  This takes a lot of focus, especially when eating his sack lunch (in character) during the entire intermission.  Mr. Dyson showed total commitment to his mission at all times even when the audience finds out his true purpose/identity.  An amazing performance!”

Stage Management: “This was a single set show, so there were no set changes.  The actors all appeared on cue for their scenes and the lighting changes and special effects (namely the bowling pin-wheels) happened on cue as well.”

Ensemble: “Cast members interacted naturally and well.  All the relationships (and they were ALL related in one way or another) were believable.  I really bought into the myriad of emotional connections between Jake, Molly, Lois, and Loretta.” “Jake, Molly, Lois, and Loretta all worked hard together to tell their story and bring relatable characters beyond even what the playwright intended. These characters could so easily be flat characterizations, but you all brought in light and meaning. Jake’s life didn’t feel full of stupendous misfortune; instead your ensemble showed us his life of love.”

Direction: “The blocking was simple with a lot of levels to play with given the slant of the grassy area.  Almost every area of the stage was utilized except maybe the upstage right area where the trees were.  Only Mr. Dyson appeared to wander back there on occasion or Molly when she rode the bicycle through it on the way downstage.” “The relationship between Jake and his daughter seemed sincere with just the right amount of hokey father-daughter play.  Jake cultivated his relationships with Lois and Loretta in unique ways that demonstrated strong character development.” “Jake’s components of the story line, along with those of his daughters and wives, had obvious intent, good pacing, and seemed very well rehearsed.  There was a stark contrast between his scenes and the bits with Mr. Dyson.” “Congratulations!  An excellent interpretation of a fine script.  Pacing was quick; naturally delivered, but with well-timed cue pickups.  All of the relationships were clearly and lovingly developed.  You drew the best out of an excellent cast (kudos on your choices there, too)… I enjoyed that the bicycle never looked artificial entering or leaving—its speed and handling were realistic for the outdoors, and I never felt it was just coming from, or going to, “offstage.””    

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November 2018 Limelight Review

MPI 2019-2020 Season Announcement!

Mariemont Players Inc. is excited to announce our 2019-2020 season!

Is He Dead?

Adapted by David Ives (Comedy)

Directed by Michele Mascari

Performance Dates: September 13-29, 2019

Synopsis: Jean-Francois Millet, a young painter of genius, is in love with Marie Leroux but in debt to a villainous picture-dealer, Bastien Andre. Andre forecloses on Millet, threatening debtor's prison unless Marie marries him. Millet realizes that the only way he can pay his debts and keep Marie from marrying Andre is to die, as it is only dead painters who achieve fame and fortune. Millet fakes his death and prospers, all while passing himself off as his own sister, the Widow Tillou. Now a rich "widow," he must find a way to get out of a dress, return to life, and marry Marie.

Broadway Bound

By Neil Simon (Comedy)

Directed by Jerry Wiesenhahn

Performance Dates: November 8-24, 2019

Synopsis: Part three of Neil Simon's acclaimed autobiographical trilogy finds Eugene and his older brother Stanley trying to break into the world of show business as professional comedy writers while coping with their parents break-up and eventual divorce. When their material is broadcast on the radio for the first time, the family is upset to hear a thinly-veiled portrait of themselves played for laughs.

Evelyn in Purgatory 

By Topher Payne (Dark Comedy)

Directed by Jennifer Keith

Performance Dates: January 10-26, 2020

Synopsis: When a complaint is filed against one of the 70,000 teachers in New York’s public schools, they’re sent to a Reassignment Center, one of a series of empty offices in the Department of Education Building. There, they sit and wait for their case to be reviewed. Usually for months. Sometimes for over a year. A claim of improper behavior by a failing student lands Evelyn Reid in “the rubber room,” where she encounters a group of teachers, some guilty, some not, who have long since lost any hope of returning to a classroom. Over the course of the school year, these colleagues form an unlikely alliance, reminding each other of forgotten passions, emerging to face life outside in unexpected new directions. They also learn French and workshop a screenplay.

Earth and Sky

By Douglas Post (Thriller)

Directed by Jef Brown

Performance Dates: March 13-29, 2020

Synopsis: EARTH AND SKY is a poetic thriller about a would-be poet and part-time librarian named Sara McKeon whose lover of ten weeks, David Ames, is found dead one hot August morning in the city of Chicago. It appears that David, owner and manager of an expensive art-deco restaurant, may have been involved in several illicit activities including kidnapping, rape and murder. Unable to believe that the man she gave her heart to was a killer, and outraged that the police seem to have closed the book on the case, Sara begins her own investigation of the crime and is led deeper and deeper through the urban labyrinth into the contemporary underworld. As the detective story moves forward in time, scenes from the love affair take us back to the moment when Sara and David first met. Finally the plots converge, and Sara finds herself face to face with the person who murdered her beloved.

The Art of Dining

By Tina Howe (Comedy)

Directed by Laura Gossett

Performance Dates: May 8-24, 2020

Synopsis: Cal and Ellen are the owners and sole staff of a small, elegant gourmet restaurant. Cal's main preoccupation is paying back the $75,000 it cost to start it up, and that means packing in the customers. Chef Ellen is preoccupied with the food's quality and stopping Cal from sampling the ingredients. The diners act out their own private dramas over dinner and their conversations are exquisite burlesques of contemporary attitudes. There's a sensual middle aged couple who go into paroxysms of ecstasy just reading the menu and then there's three crass chic young career women. Finally, there's Elizabeth, a maladroit, shy and neurotic writer who's dining with her prospective publisher. Her actions and conversation are unintentionally hilarious and a delicious example of how not to act and what not to talk about while dining.

Somewhere in Between

By Craig Pospisil (Romantic Comedy)

Directed by Dan Maloney

Performance Dates: July 10-26, 2020

Synopsis: Told in ten scenes, the play begins in the dark, as Jasper confesses his feelings of isolation to the audience. But he becomes unnerved in the dark and calls for lights. In the first scene, Jasper is stuck between floors on an elevator with a claustrophobic man, who goes quickly and hilariously over the edge. At work, a sleazy coworker gives him farcical advice on how to pick up women, and that night Jasper goes to a bookstore and tries to pick up a pretty clerk, Holly. He strikes out badly, but is picked up by another woman, who takes him home…where she lives with her boyfriend. A ride on the subway turns into a comic free-for-all as he and other riders enthusiastically give advice to a lost tourist. Jasper crosses paths with Holly again at a party and gamely starts a conversation, hoping she won't recognize him, but she does and teases him flirtatiously. On their first date, Jasper and Holly go to a cozy restaurant for quiet conversation, but the couple seated on one side of them erupts in a battle of the sexes, while the couple on the other side engages in passionate verbal foreplay. Later, Jasper walks Holly home and their conversation seems mundane, but their fantasies about each other are anything but. A chance encounter with a homeless man forces Jasper to gain some perspective on his life. Back at work, Jasper snaps when a friend tells him Holly is dating someone else. He loses his cool, kicks a chair, breaks his foot, and gets fired. Feeling suddenly liberated, he hobbles to Holly's bookstore and asks her if she is seeing someone else. She isn't. They kiss—and leave immediately for the hospital. In the end, Jasper briefly talks to the audience again, understanding he must accept life's uncertainties, which aren't all bad, and make the best of things.

Save the Date!

Mariemont Players 2018 Holiday Party

Saturday, December 8, 2018 - 6:00pm

Please bring an appetizer, side dish or dessert to share. When you respond to the EVITE (coming soon), please let us know what you plan to bring!

Entree, wine, beer and assorted soft drinks will be provided.

Broadway World Nominations

Broadway World is accepting nominations for its 17-18 Cincinnati Awards.

They are accepting nominations for both professional and non-professional productions.

If you have a second, nominate your favorite MPI show, actor, or actress, and of course, MPI as your favorite theater.

Productions that opened between 10/1/2017 and 9/30/2018 are eligible, so that includes the following MPI shows:

The Silver Whistle

Becky’s New Car

Around the World in 80 Days

All the Way

The Cemetery Club

Nominations are due by 10/31/2018, and voting will take place in November/December.

Submit nominations here!

Current Show

More Fun Than Bowling opens November 2!

MPI audiences will remember Steven Dietz’ distinct, comic voice from last year’s hit, Becky’s New Car ! More vivid characters and whacky actions await in this thoroughly unique comedy. And, for those who thought bowling was merely a matter of rolling a ball and knocking down some pins, this play examines the zen of bowling in a way that will change your thinking forever...

More Fun than Bowling is directed by Laura Gossett and features the talents of Patrick KramerJackie MiesleElizabeth L. TaylorNatasha Boeckmann, and Mark Metzner.

Performances run November 2-18, 2018.

To order tickets for More Fun than Bowling, call Betsy at 513-684-1236 OR order online at www.mariemontplayers.com. All seats are reserved and $20 each.

All Around Town   

  • Tim Carney will play Uncle Morty and Samantha Toberman will play Aunt Sadie in Cincinnati Music Theatre’s production of My Favorite Year. Performance dates: November 9-17.
  • Sally Fint will play Brooke Wyeth, Linda Callahan will play Silda Grauman and Dan Maloney will play Trip Wyeth in Other Desert Cities at Middletown Lyric Theater. Performance dates: November 9-17.
  • Jay GossettLaura GossettMark MetznerPatricia MullinsRyan OelkerKristen Vincenty, and Jim Waldfogle have been cast in the Beechmont Players production of A Christmas Carol: A Live Radio Play!, directed by Jerry Wiesenhahn. Performance dates: December 14-16.
  • Dee Anne Bryll will play Sunny in the Falcon Theatre production of The Exonerated. Performance dates: January 25-February 9, 2019.
  • Patricia Mullins will play a number of roles in the Village Players production of Women Playing Hamlet. Performance dates: February 15-23, 2019.
  • Jerry Wiesenhahn will direct the Footlighters Inc. production of First Date. Performance dates: February 14-March 2, 2019.
  • Linda Callahan will play Gingy in The Drama Workshop’s production of Love, Loss, and What I Wore. Performance dates: February 22-March 10, 2019.

October, 2018 Play Reading Report

By Anna Nixon     

Thanks to Dava Lynn, we were introduced to a brand new British play about D-Day in the Second World War when Eisenhower and the American forces joined with other European servicemen to try to finally end the six year war.

The tension in the play and in D-Day itself was caused by the typically unpredictable English Channel weather and the rival American and Scottish meteorologists’ forecasts. The meteorologists were agonized by the decision to be made by Ike based on their information which resulted in the postponement of the invasion until Tuesday, June 6th.

The Scottish meteorologist was also waiting for the difficult birth of his second child, which did not help his frame of mind. His son was born safely, mother and son were fine and D-Day was successful despite much loss of life.

An amazing play - “Pressure” by David Haig. 

Thank you again, Dava and Joyce for your help and cookies!

Readers were: Laura HovlandJoyce and Art KibbyFred RothzeidDava LynnKaren ZauggJohn Nixon and yours truly. 

Next reading: Tuesday Nov. 20th. at 7.30 pm.

Membership

MPI Membership Renewal – Please stay and play with us for another year!

The 2018-2019 membership year began July 1st and we hope you will renew! If you haven’t sent your renewal ($15 for individual or $25 for family), please do so as soon as possible so you can continue to receive the Limelight Review, party invitations, and other news!

The Cemetery Club - "Laughter and tears and joy"

Lobby Display: “Very nice lobby display that mixed head shots as well as photos from the show.  The use of the leaves in the background was both a great design feature as well as complimentary to the thematic material of the show.”

Pre-Show“I thought the playlist used for the pre-show music was extremely clever.  These would’ve been the tunes that these ladies would’ve listened to as they grew up and into early adulthood.”

Program: “Teresa Johns put together a beautiful playbill.  The layout, font and format made it easy to read.  I always love seeing headshots next to bios.  I saw no obvious errors which is the sign of a good editor.  The donors list at the back is quite impressive, kudos to MPI for having and keeping such a large patron base!”

Set Design, Décor, Construction: “Ryan Oelker designed a fantastic set.  It gave us mid-1980’s suburban sitcom, with the kitchen area leading off one side and the staircase up the back.  It provided several exits for the actors to use but enough playing space for the director to block the action.  The staircase landing provided a different level from the main stage.” “Master Carpenter Bill Pauly, Assistant Art Kibby and team constructed a solid set that realized the design and was fully functional for the actors.” “The ‘80’s living room of a recent widow was neat and clean with delicate decorative pieces and pictures in frames.”

Lighting Design & Execution: “The overall lighting of the living room scenes had a look and color that was complimentary to the actors on stage.  The actors looked natural.  The entire set was evenly lit, with no obvious shadows or dark corners.” “There were several scenes which required a tight execution of cues… ALL cues were well executed! They were well synchronized with the scenes and the action within scenes, including lights on and off during the after-wedding scene and during the individual moments in the cemetery. The timing was critical and the person running the board (not sure if it was Mr. Kramer or Mr. Misner that day) did an excellent job hitting all the cues. Good job!”

Sound Design & Execution: “The dancing scene that utilized the record player was done well, with a well-balanced volume that was drunk-dancing loud, but that still didn’t overpower the actor’s voices. It then was brought to a nice level when turned down, being audible but staying nicely low and unobtrusive in the background. The music selection was nice for the time, the place, and the scene.”

Costume Design: “BRAVO to the designers for finding all the variations of fur that Lucille kept purchasing! The design of the bridesmaid dresses was also spot-on.” “I know Linda Roll’sexpertise and creativity quite well, and she did not disappoint with the costuming of this production! Each character’s style of dress fit her personality perfectly.”

Make-Up & Hair Design: “For the female cast members who wore wigs, they looked VERY realistic (especially Ida’s). Make-up was tastefully done and didn’t require being overstated at all.”

Producer: “Kristin Vincenty has produced another winner for Mariemont! All of the technical elements were beautifully executed and made for a visually and emotionally stunning performance. Every staff member gave their element a high level of talent and hard work and it showed during this performance.”

Acting:

MARY ANN SMITH as IDA: “Ms. Smith commanded the stage as the driving force of common sense and level-headedness with this group of widows. She made it clear that Ida accepted her friends’ eccentricities as well as her own, as she tried to keep them all on sanity’s path. Ms. Smith evoked laughter and tears from the audience and made us cheer for Ida as she found a new kind of happiness.” “I felt that I came to understand Ida very well through this performance.”

CHESSIE VIGRAN as DORIS: “She was not afraid to show Doris’ weaknesses, both physical weakness and weakness of character that lead her to betray a friend… Ms. Vigran’sperformance was beautiful!” “There was a real self-assuredness given off with everything that she did. Movements onstage were purposeful, with thought being given to everything she did.”

BARBARA H. RUSSELL as LUCILLE: Mrs. Russell made me laugh out loud from the moment she stepped onto the stage! Her comedic timing was impeccable. She landed jokes that could have fallen flat in the hands of weaker actors.” “The look on Lucille’s face after her admitting what her life was really like, and later when Ida walks away when Lucille pulls off her wig, was really touching. I certainly felt that I got a deep look into Lucille at that point.”

ARNY STOLLER as SAM: “A nice solid performance.” “Arny kept his character just slightly “behind” the three leading ladies (they were most definitely the ones in control), so you also felt at times that he was being played. This was another instance where he brought it to life so that it was completely believable.  Well done Arny!”

SUSAN SCHAPIRO as MILDRED: “A pivotal role in developing the other four characters. Mildred certainly came across as the outsider who was there to flaunt her “win” over Ida by being Sam’s date.”

Stage Management: “Patricia Mullins’ stage management kept the performance running smoothly and in a timely manner. Scene changes were performed for the most part by the actors and were well executed. Light and sound cues were all on time, and they neither rushed nor slowed down the stage action.”

Direction: Jerry Wiesenhahn expertly utilized the ENTIRE area and created blocking that never seemed repetitive or sluggish.” “As evidenced by his dedication and his director’s note, Mr. Wiesenhahn has a strong connection to this play and it showed in every aspect of the performances. He brought beautiful, strong performances out of his actors.” “Overall, the show evoked laughter and tears and joy – exactly what the author intended.  It was a wonderful show that I enjoyed very much.  Congratulations!”

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322 Hits