Hilarious 'Rumors' features first-rate cast
By Judith Prieve
Article Launched: 01/11/2008 02:57:18 AM PST
At a VIP dinner party with no host, no hostess, no cooks, no cleaners, it's no wonder chaos abounds -- all in rollicking good fun, of course -- in Hapgood Theatre Company's latest production, which opened Jan. 2 at the Nick Rodriguez Community Center.
The talented Tiffany Hoover of Pleasant Hill plays Claire, eliciting laughs as she spreads wild rumors about who's having an affair, which might explain the gunshot, the hostess's and cook's absence, not to mention the lack of food.
With perceptive directing, top-notch acting, hilarious one-line zingers and a wonderful set, it's a pretty sure bet that this new theater troupe will have a hit on its hands. If you haven't yet seen a Hapgood play, check out this latest quintessential American farce to see what all the good talk is about.
Reach Judith Prieve at 925-779-7178 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Sally Hogarty
Posted: 02/26/2009 12:00:00 AM PST
THE WILLOWS THEATRE is currently presenting the heartwarming romantic comedy, "Be My Baby." The author, Ken Ludwig, also penned the hilarious "Lend Me a Tenor" and "Moon Over Buffalo" so I wasn't surprised to find myself laughing a lot throughout the production.
The unconventional love story starts with Christy (Brady Woolery) and Gloria (Melissa Quine) getting married in Scotland. When Gloria miscarries, the couple decides to adopt a friend's newborn, and since Gloria cannot travel yet, they ask Christy's former guardian John (Chris Ayles) and Gloria's Aunt Maud (Patricia Silver) to travel to America to retrieve the baby.
The trip to America is where the comedy really takes off as one delay after another keeps the curmudgeonly Scotsman and the uptight English matron in San Francisco. As the unlikely pair cares for the infant, they fall in love with more than just the baby.
Ayles is wonderful in the role of John, with Silver warming to her part in Act II. Woolery and Quine make a lovely couple with Tiffany Hoover and Nikolai Lokteff doing a fantastic job in a myriad of roles.
Special kudos to the backstage crew and set designer Peter Crompton, whose revolving set kept the 16 scene changes in Act I and 13 in Act II moving crisply along. The large, luggage stamp pictures easily shifted to the various locales and the car wash-like curtain allowed large set pieces to easily revolve in and out.
Directed by Richard Elliott.