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Review from the Manangs (10/15 Saturday Matinee)

“You asked for it, the most popular daytime reality show starring, non other than…..”
Okay, Terry B, me, and Maria Luisa went to the show, and afterwards went to the Vietnamese Restaurant, Ms. Saigon, on the corner of 6th street and Howard.  It is there we flushed out our observations, comments, likes and dislikes about, “Death of a Player.”  I shall go play by play, then later on tell ME, “Oh, go jump the lake,” (Ooo that sounds like Nanay in: In Her Mother’s Image). 

Ticket Out
The issue at hand, the Sex Trade in the Philippines and Overseas Brides is a very real issue.  It is an everyday occurance with hundreds of young women losing themselves to men who would otherwise be outcasts in their own respective country.  The play brought home the most salient points about poverty in the Philippines, and whatever it takes to get out it, including the selling of your own daughter.  The idea to name this play, “Ticket out,” was totally apropo, but somehow the acting wasn’t strong enough to support the weight of this issue.  I guess comedic relief is good in general, but I kinda think for this play it was a distraction rather than a respite from “too much drama.”  I think it needed just a bit more punch rather than “pun” .

Circadian Suites
What impressed me the most was the fact that PMSTA was bold enough to have a lesbian play, inclusive of masturbation, and bodies in motion!  The acting in this was just down right wonderful.  Maybe it’s because each player had enough experience under her belt or perhaps it was the director who pushed hard enough to bring forth the very best in each actor; but the truth be told, I thought it was one of the best pieces I’ve seen in a long time.  The actors delivered their lines so matter of factly, meaning it was so totally convincing; they were all very smooth, especially the woman who played the concerned friend; she could have been every lesbians straight, good buddy protecting her friend from harms way.  And the props!  Fantastic in the way it was used to at best, simulate the shadowy world of lesbian sex, the pathos of lesbian sex, and the wonderment of it all.  Great play!

The Word of Oprah
This play was also very strong.  The characters very believable and a good even exchange of dialog between the two.  I think I laughed very hard in this play because the actors were alive in their characters making us believe that indeed she skinned her husband alive!  I know I sat at the edge of my seat waiting to hear: Retort – Response, because I new that I was going to laugh with every following sentence.  The characters were strong and edgy, pliable yet tight in their awkward movements around the stage.  I would love to see a longer version of this just to see where it takes the audience.  The only thing I didn’t understand was the ending, when Oprah slipped into bed with the other actor…couldn’t figure that one out.

Died at 25
This play was terribly, terribly funny, but real!  I think Terry, Maria Luisa and I laughed our heads off, partly because the acting was superb, the songs were great, and the issues of life and death at a certain age was all too real for many in the audience.  If this play can get attached to a larger one, perhaps on the Life and Death of Calendar Pumping people that would be great.  The scene were she plays dead and the mother and sister are grieving reminded me of so many times I, myself wondered who and what would show up at my funeral.  An excellent script.

The lighting was right, the strength of the actor was right, the voice inflections were right…but somehow after a few paragraphs I lost interest.  I’m not sure what it would take to regain my interest again, but the play needed more “umph”….perhaps more drama with movement.  I admire the actor’s stamina for carrying an entire monologue; but it seemed as though the script was flat. I dunno.  I think the script needs more work.

Pretty Little Girls
I think the cast had great fun doing this.  I know the audience had great fun watching and reacting to the actors, so much that it was the type of play that ended much too soon.  The one actor who played the wife of the man who cheated on her was absolutely brillant especially when she fell back, against the wall, wailing and moaning!  I thought the audience was going to fall out of our seats.  The idea that you could combine: Men turning into Zombies, and A scorned woman who took revenge on her husband, I find to be quite tricky to do.  But it was done well with forceful and comedic actors filling in all the holes in an otherwise difficult piece to execute.

The Narrator come Doctor
Offered a comedic relief between each play.  Rosie did good, she has good vocal strength, good stage presence, and facial expressions that match her character and movements.  I hope PMSTA or Bindlestiff uses more older women as time marches on. 

jeanette g. lazam

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