Sunday, September 15, 2019

The Smell of the Kill—Twilight Theater Company—N. Portland



       Best Served Cold

    This dark comedy is written by Michele Lowe, directed by Jeannie Rogers and produced by Dorinda Toner.  It is playing at their space (upstairs), 7515 N. Brandon Ave. (off Lombard, small parking lot across the street)., through September 22nd.  For more information, go to their site at www.twilighttheatercompany.org

Revenge…how sweet it is!  A delight for the MeToo Movement:
Three former maidens,
All sitting in a row,
One became homeless
And then there were two.
Another remained childless
And then there was one.
She wed a thief
And then there were none.
Three former maidens,
All sitting in a row,
                                                                    Now free to be me
                                                                      And no one to say No!

    There was another play, a couple seasons back, by Profile Theatre called, The Secretaries, around a similar theme, only this one was set in a rural logging camp…with chainsaws!  (Think about it.)

    The vivacious, Nicky (Deone Jennings), has a husband, Jay (Michael K. Johnson), who prefers her not to work, take care of their kid and cook meals, but is only pulling in a minimum income himself, although he does find enough moola to buy an expensive meat locker for his wild animal kills.  He’s also under suspicion of embezzling funds from his company.   The calculating, Debra (Myhraliza Aala), has a real estate husband, Marty (Jason Santos), who has been searching for greener pastures to ply his wares.  And the knock-dead-gorgeous, Molly (Sydney Winbush), who loves children, has a husband, Danny (Brandon Michael Froom), who dotes on her to the point of stalking, but he shies away when it comes to sex.  To say the least, these are not matches made in heaven!  But when opportunity knocks (and keeps knocking) for these three former maidens, who are they to ignore the possibilities?!

    The first quarter of the script is pretty mundane, but once it gets rolling—look out!  Can’t really tell you much about the plot, as it would give away too much if I did.  But the power of the success of this production, although an ultimately clever script, is the amazing performances of this Band of Sisters.  They appear to be having a ball and it shows!  They blend together beautifully as actors, which is a real asset to the characters they play.  And they all have pretty impressive resumes (as do the Director & Producer) in film, music and stage.  Jennings, as the leader of the pack, is appropriately elusive in how she handles her friends and the situation.  Aala appears to be easily led but has a slyness in how she assesses the advantages of her position.  And Winbush, lovely to look at, is no window-dressing woman, and is able to get what she wants in spite of the roadblocks.
 
    Can’t tell you much about the guys, as you’ll have to see it to know why.  Rogers has chosen the perfect cast and skillfully nudges them through this labyrinth of twists and turns.  All in all, a darkly funny evening that is also topical and should make all the Weinstein’s of the world wake up and smell the stench around them that they’ve created!

    I highly recommend this production, especially for the performances of these three super-stars!  If you do choose to see it, please tell them Dennis sent you.
--DJS

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