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The Glass Menagerie
a Drama
CATEGORY : DRAMA
by Tennessee Williams

COMPANY : Performing Arts North [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Dancing Goat Theatre [WEBSITE]
ID# 4298

SHOWING : April 26, 2012 - May 05, 2012

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

The promise of a gentleman caller lifts the Wingfields out of their rut. His visit changes them all forever. A very strong cast includes Mary Claire Klooster, Caitlin Warrens, Carson Cerney and Boyd Gossett.


CAST & CREW LIST
Director Margarita Moldovan
Tom Carson Cerney
Jim Boyd Gossett
Amanda Mary Claire Klooster
Laura Caitlin Warrens
Click to Submit Cast & Crew Info for this production
REVIEWS

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Family Dynamics
by playgoer
Sunday, May 6, 2012
3.5
"The Glass Menagerie" directed by Margarita Moldovan at Performing Arts North portrays a full range of family dynamics. Amanda Wingfield, played by Mary Claire Klooster, is not the deluded gorgon of Southern charm that she sometimes seems to be. She is a mother, bewildered by the way her children are turning out. Her son Tom, played by Carson Cerney, is snarky, rude, angry, and loving from moment to moment. Her daughter Laura, played by Caitlin Warrens, is quietly defiant, deeply wounded, yet respectful. We see a family, dysfunctional though it might be, with understandable sibling and parent-child relationships.

When the gentleman caller, Jim, shows up, the females swarm around him like moths drawn to a flame. Boyd Gossett brings down-to-earth warmth to the role, breaking the shell that surrounds Laura after chatting amiably with her mother. Amanda's flirtatious behavior with Jim has the eagerness of someone getting back in her element after having been denied meaningful human companionship for too long. Laura's behavior contains the wonder of a person experiencing meaningful human companionship for the first time. It's when Jim is onstage that the play really hits its stride.

A simple set has been provided by the director and Marty Wallis. A small stoop, a few tables (one large; two small), and a sofa draped in black sit under huge plexiglass shards suspended from the ceiling. It's a generally satisfactory set, although some of the action takes place on the floor and isn't easily visible to all members of the audience. Props are a mixture of realistic (candelabra, glass figurines, flask, cigarettes, yearbook, phone) and imaginary (food and utensils). Lighting is generally murky and somewhat uneven. A cleaner focus on portions of the stage would have helped.

Costumes work well, although Amanda's gown for dinner with the gentleman caller is probably not faithful to the time period (the Great Depression). Nevertheless, it provides the most memorable stage pictures, as outrageous as it is. Amanda's eyes glow with pleasure at being in it once again.

"The Glass Menagerie" is a classic American play, and Performing Arts North is giving it a worthy production. There are a few too many word bobbles, and the pace is a little shaky in the first part of this intermissionless entertainment, but it gains power as it goes along. The end of the show is a little quirky, with a non-traditional blowing out of candles, but it does no lasting harm. Tennessee Williams' play comes shining through. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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