Planes, trains, lesbians, and murder?!
Since I'm publishing this before the run of the show has ended, I don't want to spoil too much, so we'll have a soft spoiler warning here, and a hard spoiler warning further in.
My sister was also in this show so like, let's not pretend this is an unbiased review.
I knew very little coming into this show. I knew that my sister was in it, and I knew that it was at Broom Street Theater.
For all of you who haven't been to Broom St. Theater, it actually has an extensive Wikipedia page if you're interested. It's a blackbox theater, and they do predominantly experimental theater and original theater.
I've been to a show at the theater before, and you can read that blog post if you're interested. (#FeedMeClicks)
I came with my parents, and they graciously paid for my ticket, so I guess I can't toot my horn too much about supporting local artists. #ExposureTho
I got a little more information from the program. Stated outright it was going to be a one act tragedy (in presentation. In my opinion the plot itself follows a mini three act structure, it just didn't have breaks) and we would bear witness to herbal cigarette smoking.
The font was also kind of edgy so it had that going for it.
The cover of the program also had a train. That becomes important.
Because it's the least spoilery territory, I'll start by raving about this train.
The show takes place in one location, a residence (inside and a bit of the outside) very close to / underneath some train tracks / a train station.
I really liked this feature because it allowed for some wild dynamic play. Throughout the play, trains go by. This is accompanied by an obnoxiously loud sound queue, and some really cool light design (#ShoutOut to the the light designer Phil Koenig, I liked the way the lights flickered).
When these trains pass, which they do quite often, the characters have the choice of staying quiet to wait for the train to pass, or screaming over the sound. It allows for levels, in terms of tension and sound, that you don't really get in a static environment.
The fact that the guy lives by the trains isn't just random - it's a native part of the plot fitting in with themes of status of living - and the trains come frequently enough that they don't feel plot devicey. Never was there a point where I sat there coyly saying 'Deus Ex LoudTrain', they always felt like they fit.
The concept also really couldn't be done in any other form than an audiovisual storytelling method. I don't think it could work as effectively in prose or whatnot.
So yeah, I really liked the train thing.
I don't trust myself enough to write anything more without picking apart plot points, so here's your second warning. Full frontal spoilers ahead.
This play deals with the uber rich. Like really really rich people. The kind that will write 5K checks out of spite like it's a candy bar at a gas station.
The greater part of the play is a character study of mom, dad, and son, and how these incredibly wealthy people act in completely horrible ways. Again, I wish I had figured that out earlier, because I spent a dumb amount of time watching the play thinking, 'why on earth are these people so terrible. why are their values so odd'.
For the dumb theatergoers like myself, this is remedied by the dad literally shelling out $1000 cash at one point.
Anyway, lets do a roundup of the characters:
Dad (Will Sr.) - Super rich; shady; doesn't respect boundaries; terrible person.
Son (Will Jr.) - Uber driver extraordinaire; doesn't understand landlord tenant law; also kind of a terrible person.
Cynthia - Has some kind of relationship with Will Jr. and then starts sleeping with Will Sr. for money; values personal gain over basically anything else; #GetLaidGetPaid; also kind of a terrible person.
Policewoman (my sister) - a subversion of the butch lesbian policewoman trope, a soft naive lesbian policewoman; really dumb; doesn't understand terrible people; hits on people at work; not a terrible person, just sort of clueless.
Mom - Super rich; vomits easily; problematic fave; shows up late but gets the last hurrah.
After the show Cassie gave me a dramatic reenactment of the times the policewoman knocks on the door.
My hand also slipped during one of the photos and I accidentally got a great photo for making memes.
Overall it was a fun show to see. The actors all did a great job with my personal favorite being Mom, played by Kathleen Tissot, most likely because was like, slightly less awful of a person than the rest of the characters. She also gets a fun campy villain ending, which helps.
Shout out to the Electrician listed in the program, Colin Koenig, who shares my first name.
And of course props to the best actor, character, and human being in the show, Cassie Kohrs.
So yeah, if you're in the area and you want to see some quality local community theater with my sister in it, tromp on over to Broom Street Theater and don't sit in the front row of the red seats. During one scene wine is poured on the floor and half a drop hit my leg.
Go forth and buy tickets. Here's the Facebook Page.
Support local art.