Theatre Review

By Amber Snow

Welcome to the first actual review of my career as Mendocino JR College Review Girl (Girl Girl Girl— cool fadeout echo here). For my first assignment, my partener in crime and I travelled to Fort Bragg to catch a play at the fabulouse Warehouse Repertory Theatre. I know it's fabulous because I've been there! It was a cool day, as coastal days are, and the Warehouse Rep. actually supplied blankets for us to cuddle up in! Talk about creating an intimate atmosphere. As the stage was incredibly close to the audience and impossibly small, it took quite a bit of suspension of disbelief to be fully absorbed in the performance. This created the chance for yet another pleasing point about the Warehouse Repertory Theatre. At one point two of the cast members strolled off of the stage and took a walk around the audience members while sustaining dialogue. I loved it!

This brilliantly sensitive and surreal play, written by Heather McDonald, uses Impressionist artists such as Berthe Morisot, Eugene Manet, Paul Cezanne, and Ava Gonzolez as models for her characters. Dream of a Common Language is a refreshing play dealing with topics such as sexual equality, dying love and matters of the mind. This play expresses the trials and tribulations of trailblazers in any field. Directed by Meg Patterson, Dream of a Common Language is a strong and entertaining play mixing poignant humor and important life lessons with an easy grace. Alena Guest vividly and powerfully portrays Clovis, a mentally instable artist (hinting at Multiple Personality Disorder), who yearns to paint freely but is stifled by her husband's conformist beliefs. Clovis is inspired by Morisot. Clovis's husband Victor, based on Manet, is played strongly by the Producing Director for the Warehouse, Doug Warner. The part of Dolores is played by Toni Orans, who unfortunately fails to effectively paint the mental pictures her role calls for. Orans does not fail to capture my heart during my favorite scene between Dolores and Victor, dictating a letter. Jill Taylor adds much to the performance as the brightly entertaining Pola, based on the life of Ava Gonzalez. The role filling the shoes of Paul Cezanne, Marc, is also a strong character portrayed by Hugh Dignon. Lucas Peters plays Mylo, Clovis and Victor's son. Grace Warner also dedicated her time to this production, acting as Clovis at age nine. All in all, I recommend seeing this production as it is a true gem of the contemporary genre. Parental discretion is advised because there is frontal nudity of the female and male gender.

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