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The Dining Room
a Comedy/Drama
CATEGORY : COMEDY DRAMA
by A. R. Gurney

COMPANY : Cherokee Theatre Company [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Canton Theatre [WEBSITE]
ID# 4693

SHOWING : March 13, 2015 - March 22, 2015

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

One play. Six actors. FIFTY characters. And so the stage is set for A.R. Gurney’s "The Dining Room," where the cast of six change roles, personalities, and ages to bring all the characters to life. The play is a series of vignettes, all taking place in what used to be the hub of family life – the dining room.


CAST & CREW LIST
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REVIEWS

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An Elegant Soiree
by playgoer
Monday, March 16, 2015
3.5
Cherokee Theatre Company’s production of "The Dining Room" mines the subject matter for its comedy. Generations of families show up in the dining room, often in overlapping vignettes, showing us quiet moments and crises in the lives of the inhabitants over several generations. With over fifty roles parceled out among six actors, the possibility of unbridled tour-de-force performances exists.

Director Myrna Feldman hasn’t given the actors free reign, instead molding the performances in each segment to meld nicely, emphasizing the comic elements, without ignoring the human connections inherent in the short scenes. All the actors have a chance to shine. Brittany Hill nicely plays several distinct variations on a household maid, some more timid, some more brassy. Sarah Nation ably portrays a number of characters, with perhaps a senile matriarch as her best role. Morgan Vaughn portrays a wide range of roles too, bringing a winning sauciness to an under-the-table flirtation. Cody Vaughn shows less range than the others, using an exaggerated stance as a grandfather that emphasizes his inherent sprightliness, but doesn’t embarrass himself in the least. Andy Ward plays perhaps the widest range of ages, imbuing each with appropriate inflections and postures. RJ Allen is the standout, if anyone is, with each of his characters neatly and cleanly distinguished from one another.

The set, designed by Ed Palombo, is an elegant room with well-appointed furnishings, nicely decorated and complemented by the props provided by Annette Nellums, Peggy Waylor, and Crystal Fann. Lighting, by Daryl Collins and Richard Goodman, and sound, by Daryl Collins, Emily Mimbs, and Myrna Feldman, don’t overdo effects. The drawing of the stage curtain at act ends adds a nice note, acting as a tip of the hat to "outdated" theatrical traditions, just as the dining room in today’s society is a vestige of "outdated" family traditions. With the cast acting as their own costumers, the costume plot of the show is less varied than it might be, but this is overall a good-looking production that does full justice to A.R. Gurney’s oft-performed script. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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