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Unnecessary Farce (A Regional Premiere)
a Farce
CATEGORY : COMEDY
by Paul Slade Smith

COMPANY : Stage Door Players [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Stage Door Players [WEBSITE]
ID# 3800

SHOWING : September 24, 2010 - October 17, 2010

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

Two cops. Three crooks. Eight doors. Ready? Set? Laugh! In two adjoining motel rooms, an embezzling mayor is to meet with his female accountant, while in the room next-door; two undercover cops wait to catch the meeting on videotape. But there's some confusion as to who's in which room, who's being videotaped, who's taken the money, who's hired a hit man, and why the accountant keeps taking off her clothes.


CAST & CREW LIST
Costume Design Jim Alford
Sound Design Dan Bauman
Stage Manager Leslye Kahn
Production Manager Courtney Loner
Scenic Design Chuck Welcome
Lighting Design John David Williams
Mayor Meekly Larry Davis
Eric John Markowski
Agent Frank Alan Phelps
Karen Carrie Walrond-Hood
Billie Annie York
Todd Jacob York
Click to Submit Cast & Crew Info for this production
REVIEWS

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Necessary Laughter
by playgoer
Sunday, September 26, 2010
4.5
Say "Unnecessary Farce" with your strongest Scottish brogue and it will start sounding like "Unnecessary Force." That's one of the jokes in Paul Slade Smith's "Unnecessary Farce," currently being given a stylish, funny production by Stage Door Players in Dunwoody. This comedy mixes all the requisite elements of farce (slamming doors, sexual dalliances, double entendres) with the story of a small-town police sting.

Eric Sheridan (played by John Markowski) is a low-ranking policeman in town, and Billie Dwyer (played by Annie York) is fresh out of police academy and ready to take on the world. They have been given the assignment of clandestinely monitoring a meeting between accountant Karen Brown (played by Carrie Walrond Hood) and Mayor Meekly (played by Larry Davis). The mayor is suspected of siphoning off several million dollars' worth of funds from the city budget.

The mayor is accompanied by security agent Frank (played by Alan Phelps). Before Frank arrives, we see that Eric and Karen have commenced a passionate relationship. Frank appears at a moment when the two are in a state of undress, and Karen attempts to cover the situation by claiming a sudden attraction for Frank. Soon, he too is trouserless. The mayor (the only male who keeps his pants on in this show) keeps wandering in when actions in or on the bed appear most compromising. Add in a Scotsman (played by Jacob York) and the mayor's wife (played by Holly Stevenson), and the action only gets more frenetic as the show goes along.

This smartly written farce gives all the actors their moments to shine. John Markowski starts the show with a phone call in which he has the shtick of buttoning his shirt over the phone cord and reaching for his pants with a coat hanger. Annie York soon enters, full of energy and easily-deflated bravado (and with a water pistol in place of a real gun). Carrie Walrond Hood makes the most of her character's often-unintentional states of undress. Alan Phelps does a terrific job of looking tough as nails and yet letting his fraidy-cat personality surface at every opportunity. Jacob York is winning as the Scotsman whose accent gets incomprehensively stronger the angrier he gets, and Larry Davis and Holly Stevenson both fit in perfectly with their great timing and seemingly sweet portrayals.

The set is another triumph for Chuck Welcome. The action takes place in two adjoining motel rooms, each with a bathroom, a closet, a main door, and a connecting door. All the doors get a workout. The rooms adjoin at a diagonal line down the center of the playing area, with all furnishings mirrored in the two rooms. There's a bland, beige decor that is perfect for an upscale motel. The invisible center wall almost looks like a mirror when you first enter the auditorium, with back-to-back lamps doing the most to achieve that effect. It's the perfect set for this farce.

Robert Egizio has directed with his usual Úlan. Nice blocking touches come throughout the show to add to the fun -- circling action that requires the actors to walk across a bed, Billie's movements across the floor in a bound-and-gagged slither, mirrored actions in the two rooms as characters roll around on the beds. It's a delight to experience, and deserves to be a hit starting the Stage Door Players' 2010-2011 season. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
Rolling in the Aisle Funny by Mama Alma
I couldn't agree with the foregoing review more. Annie York (Officer Dwyer) and Carrie Hood (Accountant Karen Brown) are especially funny with their distinctive physical comedy. John Markowski (Officer Sheridan) gives another rock solid performance (including playing the bagpipes without an instrument). Robert Egezio's sense of timing makes him, for my money, the best director of farce in town.
Oops by Mama Alma
Even if I have been spelling his name wrong for five years. Sorry, Robert.


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