Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Social Security 6/20/12

Spoiler Alert !!! As always, I strongly suggest you go and see any play or musical before you read or look at the photos in my blog. I write based on my experience. It is not a substitute for your own experience. After you go see the performance, you can take a look at the blog, reminisce, talk to your friends about it (and hopefully get them to read/look at this blog). Convince them to go see the performance for themselves.

Life tends to go full circle. As you go through your teenage years you are a bit restricted by your parents, and when away from home, say at college, you are always checked up on. The same can also be said as you grow older. As you get up in years your kids get even with you, so it seems. You seem to be restricted just because you are old. And should you go out, everyone needs to keep tabs on you. The difference . . . at first you are learning.  As you go through life you gain wisdom. With that wisdom comes a greater responsibility to listen, and to be there for your grandchildren.

Social Security is comical. The above paragraph is just my take on this play by Andrew Bergman. The cast at Beatniks was great. Why they do not start laughing in the middle of some of this play I do not know. Talent I would say. This play is real life. We all see it, go through it, and to different degrees. I think the cast at times understood this. They settled into their parts during rehearsal as if it was their life in front of them . . . comical as it is.

Here are the characters and cast of the play . . .

David Kahn - played by Jeff Peterson

Barbara Kahn - played by Kali Rasala

Trudy Heyman - played by Gail Komer

Martin Heyman - played by Wayne Puchkors

Sophie Greengrass - played by Kay Wagman

Maurice Koenig - played by Jack Jaros


Here are some photos for you to enjoy . . .




After the business call, they start talking about the call they received a few days earlier from Barbara's sister Trudy. All that Trudy told them was that they were coming to talk to Barbara and David. About what, Trudy would not say . . .




You talk to one another, guessing what it might be about, still thinking the worse, hoping it is not the worse, though preparing each other for the worse . . .





No conclusions, however still wondering what it might be about . . .




Then the buzzer, scaring the daylights out of Barbara . . . they are here.  I must say, I really liked the character of Barbara and how it was played.




The cast did a great job burying any idea you might stick with as to the reason for the visit. I had thought of a reason or two, and dismissed them totally. The story, the acting, pulled you into a sense of calm . . . well, as calm as it might appear. You find out soon that these two sisters think about life a little differently, and briefly talked about how they were treated differently by Sophia, their mom.




Easedropping? Hmmm . . .



The daughter of Trudy and Martin is under discussion. The parents claiming that when they call their daughter  twice a day (yes, twice a day) their daughter is either not at the dormitory, taking a shower, or doing something else where she is not available. Of course Barbara and David are getting part of the blame for encouraging that their daughter to away to college. And David thinking Trudy and Martin are hounding their daughter too much, especially with two calls a day. Now, I can picture that going on back at home when I was away at college. Even for a guy, your mom never stops worrying.



Now, the real news breaks . . . what about mom . . . because Trudy and Martin are leaving to go talk to their daughter.


Now how would you take it? Your sister and her husband taking care of mom all these years, happy doing it, you and your husband have good jobs and a life, then the bomb . . .


Drinks for everyone I think . . .





If you are here, where is Sophia (mom)?


Where?








So, now Sophie is living with them. Barbara is all tense because her life has been turned upside down. However, life goes on, at least outside your home. Maurice, a well respected painter, is in town and coming to a dinner party at Barbara and Davids . . .






David soon arrives with Maurice, and Sophie is still in her robe.  Well, not really in her robe any more. When David arrives (and my photos did not turn out well), he quickly sees Sophie with her robe off (because Barbara told her she needed to get dressed, and to take her robe off), and rushes Maurice into the closet from panic.



After getting Sophie into her room, Maurice is let out of the closet, and is a bit confused . . .




To the surprise of Barbara and David, Sophie and Maurice hit it off.  Sophia looks like a different women, at least to Barbara and David.




Some time has gone by now. Maurice has been taking Sophie out, enjoying life. He even painted her . . .


Barbara and David cannot believe how well Sophie has taken control of life (easy to do when you are allowed).




Barbara and David "see", think about there life, and . . .




This next part I missed photographing, which sets up this hilarious next scene. Barbara and David go to the sofa, are making out, when all of a sudden the door opens and in walks Trudy and Martin.  Needless to say Barbara and David were very upset about Trudy and Martin's timing to come back, let alone letting themselves in.



Martin notices the new painting, that it is of Sophie, and more importantly to him, asks how much it is worth . . .


Where is Sophie? Well, who knows . . . probably still out . . .


As Trudy is told, she is in disbelief . . .







Well, their daughter is okay, not living with two guys as she told them over the phone. Then, the another bombshell goes off.





Martin pulls out a photo of the lady he is running off with . . . which is of her and her deceased husband . . .



Sophie is heard coming down the hall, back from her night out. Trudy does not want to be the one to tell Sophie that she and Martin are divorcing, so they scoot out the back door before Sophie walks in, leaving the news for Barbara and David to tell.


At this point you understand that Sophie knows full well what goes on around her, and asks if Trudy and Martin made it out okay before she came in.


Sophie updates Barbara and Martin on what has been going on with her and Maurice.



And Sophie updates Barbara and David with the true story of Trudy and Martin's daughter. Seems like grandmother knew what was going on all along, because she and her granddaughter talk to each other. Sophia also knew about the other lady and Martin.



Off Sophie goes . . . and where did we leave off . . .





Life is simple. It takes people to make it complicated. We start out not being allowed to experience life, then experience it and either become too integrated or to protective, just to end up back with too much experience and the joy of life removed. However, this play may seem simple on the surface. The voice of the writer speaks through this play, hinting to us, making it complicated, so that we can break it down and start all over. Simply . . .


About the cast themselves . . . rehearsal was great. I cannot wait to see them perform this play in front of an audience. I will not be able to make it to opening night, which to me is the exciting night. I will make it the day after.

All of the cast is to be respected for what I witnessed and photographed. I do want to let you know that Gail Komer impressed me when she performed in V-day this year, and to see her transform into her character Trudy was amazing to me. Seeing Jeff and Kali up there, as I enjoyed their performance, made me want to switch places with Jeff at certain times because of his great part being the symmetry in this play, and because he had the beautiful Kali in front of him to work with. I have seen Wayne in a couple plays now, and he has appeared comfortable, at home on stage, making me believe him each time I have seen him. Kay is a sweetheart in this play. Through her character she makes you understand the controversy she stirs. I picture Jack and his character close to one of the same. His acting commanded the right attention, elegance, romance. I think all of the ladies will love him . . .

Of course this would not have come about without the direction of:

Andrea Creasbaum

and

Rip Johnson

Along with the supporting production staff, which the list is long.



Beatniks on Conkey
418 Conkey Street
Hammond, IN  46324
(219) 852-0848
BeatniksOnConkey@sbcglobal.net

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