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True Love Lies

a Comedy
CATEGORY :
by Brad Fraser

COMPANY : Horizon Theatre Company [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Horizon Theatre Company [WEBSITE]
ID# 3744

SHOWING : May 21, 2010 - June 20, 2010

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

Kane and Carolyn have the typical American family. But when David, a lover from Kane’s past, unexpectedly appears, their fashionable lifestyle starts to fall around their ears, as we look on, wondering what can possibly go wrong next! This wild and wisecracking (and sometimes shocking) new comedy from the renowned Brad Fraser will have you on the edge of your seat. Mature language and situations.


CAST & CREW LIST
Kane Robin Bloodworth
Carolyn LaLa Cochran
set and costume design Isabel curley-clay
costume & set design Moriah curley-clay
David James Donadio
Royce Jimi Kocina
Madison Tracy Moore
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REVIEWS

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Honestly, Now
by Dedalus
Friday, June 18, 2010
4.0
No matter how much you shake and how you dance, goes the somewhat paraphrased graffito, it’s the little drops of dishonesty that are the hardest to keep from staining your shorts.

Brad Fraser’s “True Love Lies,” a sorta kinda decades-later sequel to his “Unidentified Human Remains and the True Nature of Love,” gives us a family of characters who like to tell small lies to protect their relationships, their children, and, of course, themselves. A few awkward reveals later, and suddenly old lies become the pretext for creating new ones, and the cycle of dishonestly threatens to upend their apple-cart of true love and self-righteous hurt.

Kane and Carolyn are a happy couple, facing middle-age with a confidence born of their successful business, their happy marriage, and their grown children. When daughter Madison applies for a job at the restaurant of a man (David) with whom Kane had an intense youthful relationship, the lies line up like a row of ducks ready to shoot hunters in a barrel.

The irony of everything is that all the lies, large and small, are perfectly justified. After all, all the indiscretions are so much less important than the relationships the “reveal” would threaten.

Until, of course, they are no longer less important.

This play is a roller-coaster ride of quick wit, fast dialogue, short scenes, sudden surprise, and not a few moments of sudden intensity, and it very cleverly shows the trans-generational legacy of lies, both big and little, and true love, both heartfelt and fallen-into-entropy habit.

Director Lisa Adler has assembled a fine cast that does the story justice. Although the performance I saw was missing James Donadio’s David, his understudy, Kenneth J. Sleigh (*), gave a fine performance that showed us a man, slightly fey but still appealing to both genders, desperately fighting to hold onto his fast-fading youth and faster-fading business. Robin Bloodworth was excellent as the oft-befuddled Kane, guiltily struggling to deal with his cracking-at-the-seams family while agonizing at the pain an old lie can still cause. Lala Cochran is amazing as Carolyn, a woman at an emotional crossroads who grasps at an old lie to justify a brand-new one. She juggles too many conflicting levels, making them blend into a darkly funny portrait of a woman who embraces the hurt her own choices have left her.

Jimi Kocina and Tracey Vaden Moore are the “next generation,” bouncing between father and ex-lover with that combination of vulnerability and risk-taking knee-jerk action that so circumscribes the young and not-ready-for-the-world. Truly individual, they still suggest their parents, both in their choices and in their actions. Ms. Moore and Mr. Kocina are compelling actors both, making their elders appear like satellites in this play that is really about them (at least in their own eyes).

Set designers Isabel and Moriah Curley-Clay have put together a delightfully 90’s-retro set, all straight lines and glass and lights that beautifully suggests that these characters have become stuck in a time that welcomed their small indiscretions. The fact that these lies cannot withstand the harsh light of today is, indeed, the point, and the set very cleverly underscores that fact. Of course, I could have done with less of that irritating techno-pop that underscored every scene change, but, I suppose, if you’re building a ‘90’s world, you have to take what was there.

In any case, even if I have a few slight reservations (the distancing effect of the music really kept me from forming more that a cleverly intellectual connection with these characters), I can still say I am glad to have spent a few hours in their company. Hopefully, some of you may feel the same way.

The rest of you of can just say you were. After all, who will know?

-- Brad Rudy (BKRudy@aol.com)

* Full Disclosure: I found to my surprise, I actually knew Mr. Sleigh once upon a time when we worked together on a show in a pre-Atlanta-move state, so I’m probably pre-disposed to like what he does.
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