Capital Fringe Review: ‘Madwoman in the Attic: An Evening of Short Plays’ by Grace Kim

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Madwoman in the Attic: An Evening of Short Plays by Theresa Rebeck and directed by Aniko Olah unfold through six short skits that amusingly portray the theme of the how whacky the darker side of human “madness” and memories can be.

In Katie and Frank, the wife (Nancy Viemeister) becomes maddened by her husband’s (G. Michael Harris) refusal to call his mother. This well scripted and acted skit involves back and forth heated exchanges and includes the wife rationalizing her gun purchase–will the presence and threat of a gun succeed in doing her bidding?

In Sex With the Censor, a prostitute (Leigh Anna Fry) has a strange encounter with her customer (Joseph Michael Jones). This is an interesting play full of a series of verbal exchanges where the prostitute has to figure out what her customer wants by answering the question–what do you want. This question is repeated until the prostitute figures out how this particular customer wants to be pleased–and it’s not how you expect.

In Big Mistake, we have the classic bar scene situation where two men and two women encounter each other. The two girlfriends, Lorna (Samantha Merrick) and Annie (Leigh Anna Fry), are having drinks and talking.  The two men, Brian (G. Michael Harris) and Paul (Ricardo Frederick Evans), are on the other side of the bar also drinking and talking when Brian and Lorna see each other–ohhh, it seems they have a past. As the two with a past start talking, the strangers, Lorna and Paul, also start talking in what should be friendly small talk the way strangers would do when getting to know someone new. Soon, both sets of conversations become heated exchanges–one over their past encounters and the other over small talk miscommunications. You’ll have to see it for yourself to know how this one ends.

The Funeral Play has Jim (Joseph Michael Jones) and Roy (Ricardo Frederick Evans) delving into what happens when the deceased is in the wrong coffin. The mourning son, Roy, just lost his mother but the funeral home employee, Jim, is the one who has a moment of madness recalling his mother’s death.

Great To See You depicts the awkward and dangerous situation when a married man, Rudy (Ricardo Frederick Evans), has dinner with an old fling, Liza (Leigh Anna Fry). Yes, the wife, Jill (Nancy Viemeister) is also at the dinner table. The oblivious wife doesn’t pick up on the sexual tension and unfinished business between the old flings that come out when the wife has to leave the table to check-in with the babysitter. But by the end of this play, the situation is resolved in an unexpected way and it’s quite juicy.

The Actress has a couple, Nina (Samantha Merrick) and Mike (G. Michael Harris) taking a beach vacation to get away from it all. At least, that’s what Mike has in mind. Nina, though, has other things on her mind that seems to prevent her from relaxing. She’s hyper, tense, and worried about her acting career but the stress starts affecting the vacation until it dissolves into a battle over careers and choices.

Well written and acted, Madwoman in the Attic is an enjoyable experience that moves along a good pace and will produce chuckles whether you relate to the stories or not.

For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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