Capital Fringe 2014 Review: ‘Chesapeake’

(Best of the Capital Fringe)

Chesapeake by Lee Blessing – A One-Man – Er, Dog – Show!

Dexter Hamlett and Friend. Photo by Brian S. Allard.

Dexter Hamlett and Friend. Photo by Brian S. Allard.

Chesapeake by Lee Blessing opened last night in the intimate Bedroom, in a 110-minute, single-act, star turn featuring the multi-talented Dexter Hamlett as a performance artist – or a Chesapeake Bay Retriever – or both!

Senator Therm Pooley is the Dixiecrat father of rebel-son and performance artist Kerr, about to vote to de-fund the NEA when life takes a strange turn. Kerr, who is so alienated by his father’s politics that he decides to kidnap Therm’s pride and joy, his Retriever, instead inhabits the dog’s life in a strange twist of fate.

Aly Ettman, Founding Artistic Director of Peter’s Alley Theatre Productions and director of 20+ plays in both DC and New York, utilizes a single actor and a single folding chair as the backdrop for this passion play exploring the value of art and political exploitation. But lo and behold, hidden inside the well-written words is the story of unexpected human connection.

Therm the villain is exposed as having a surprising heart that is touched by not his wife, nor his mistress, nor his son, but his canine friend. Hamlett reveals the connection – and disconnection – in poignant, touching and unexpected ways.

But what is truly in the Senator’s heart? Inquiring minds want to know! And theater-goers can find out during the final five performances through July 26th at Fort Fringe—Bedroom, 612 L Street, NW, in Washington, DC . For more information and to purchase tickets, go to their Capital Fringe show page.

This dog has its day!

A Preview on DCMetroTheaterArts.


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