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The Credeaux Canvas

a Drama
CATEGORY : DRAMA
by Keith Bunin

COMPANY : Out of Box Theatre [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Artisan Resource Center
ID# 4944

SHOWING : August 05, 2016 - August 20, 2016

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

"There’s no harm in a little fraud among friends."

A young painter and the desperate son of a prominent art dealer dabble in art forgery in Keith Bunin’s "The Credeaux Canvas," a play that probes the intersection of art and truth, and ponders how both affect life and love.


CAST & CREW LIST
Director Topher Payne
Winston Daniel Carter Brown
Jamie Matthew Busch
Amelia Emily Sams
Tess Mary K. Shaw
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REVIEWS

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Paint by Numbers
by playgoer
Friday, August 19, 2016
4.5
Keith Bunin’s "The Credeaux Canvas" mixes art appreciation, forgery, nudity, and relationships into an intriguing drama. The apparently bi-polar Jamie (Matthew Busch), son of an art dealer, and the emotionally remote art student Winston (Daniel Carter Brown) are roommates. Together with Jamie’s girlfriend Amelia (Emily Sams), they concoct a plan involving undiscovered nudes painted by little-known artist Jean-Paul Credeaux, trying to interest rich dilettante Tess (Mary K. Shaw) in purchasing one for her collection. Very little goes as planned.

The set, designed by Morgan Brooks and director Topher Payne, has a padlocked door up center, with a bead-curtained entry to a bedroom up right and a door to the bathroom up left. Winston’s bed is on the floor down right, with an easel stage left. A couple of chairs provide seating. Walls left and right are covered with collages of artwork reproductions. Kitchen appliances are scattered around, nicely suggesting a small one-bedroom NYC apartment in which the other room has to serve multiple purposes.

Bradley Rudy’s lighting gives a distinct atmospheric feel to each of the four scenes, and to moments within the scenes. It’s a nice lighting scheme, working even when the director has blocked action in the bed or on the floor, which creates obstructed sightlines for audience members with any bodies in front of them.

Mr. Payne has pulled excellent performances out of his cast and has shaped the action to keep things moving, at least until the somewhat extended denouement in the final scene. Emily Sams is wondrous throughout, her expressive face and voice striking just the right notes. Mary K. Shaw is also a delight, ably creating a character who is both an astute art critic and an emotionally-driven dupe. The men don’t fare quite as well. Matthew Busch is powerful in his manic phase, but doesn’t fully convey an underlying depression. Daniel Carter Brown is very natural in his low-key moments, but takes on a slightly unnatural tone in his more emotional moments, suggesting a person with Asperger’s without fully confirming that diagnosis.

Keith Bunin has written a play that balances discussions of art neatly with the universal themes of money and sex. Full male and female nudity are not as distracting as one might assume, and costumes are fully appropriate otherwise. Topher Payne’s sound design doesn’t add a lot to the production, but acts as a background soundscape for extended scene change transitions. His direction in these transitions, and in the scenes themselves, maintains a flow and consistency of mood that enhances the production. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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