Theatre Mirror Reviews - "Spring Chicken"

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note: entire contents copyright 2005 by Larry Stark

"Spring Chicken"

by Chris Davis
Directed by Louisa Richards

Producers Bob Mussett & Louisa Richards
Sound Design by Josh J. Ferrao
Lighting Design/Stage Manager Jon Wolfe

Aug..................................Ed Hoopman
Oct.................................Bob Mussett
Mar................................Kelley Estes
Mark................................Mike Haddad
Jan/Voice for Deer...........Katherine McDonald
April/Voices for Baboon & Ass...Claire Shinkman
Betty/Deer/Babboon/St. Francis.....Chris Murphy

Okay look, you're not going to believe anything I try to say about the "plot" here, but believe these facts: First, this cast is superb in maintaining ridiculous character and in flawless comic timing. Second, the asides and throw-aways are, by themselves, worth the price of admission. Third, no matter where this cataract of a comedy meanders or staggers at breakneck pace, there is always a new surprise waiting up ahead. And All Of Them are worth the trip.
Now, about that plot.....

The show opens answering the question "Why do the humans want to cross the road?" Answer: because they're starving and there's a Kentucky Fried Chicken palace right across a superhighway where cars Never Stop speeding past, even when they frequently collide, either with each other or with dumb-animals dumb enough to step in their way. One of the humans wants to wait for God to bring about "The Big One" that will stop Everything; the other doubts God, but believes a woman driving by on her way to work every day is his One True Love and maybe winks at him as she speeds past. (I don't know which is which but Aug is Ed Hoopman and Oct is Bob Mussett and, no, there IS no reason for those names that I know of. Adjust to it.)

Dan Liston plays Dec (pronounced "Deac"), an enthusiastic salesman hawking a new Crazy Koala Cola with too much caffeine, but for some people it's addictive and, well, turns them into chickens.

Mar (who is played intensely by Kelley Estes though frequently referring to herself as a man; maybe it's a gender-blind casting gimmick?) has a plan to grow a tree that will arch Over the road, because, he has found some Magic Sticks that.... Well, never mind. But Jan (Katherine McDonald [I hope I got Those two actress-names hitched to the right characters!]) is a Russian Scientist who knows how to stop the traffic. She has in a box a Red Light!!! Shine it into the on-coming traffic and ... voila! But what's a scientific breakthrough without a ritual Red Light Dance first, right?
(I'm NOT Making This UP You Know!!!)

Claire Shinkman and Mike Haddad play people rich enough to be Driving cars, running into deer, and doing a quickie at The Plant where a flashback reveals that Betty (Chris Murphy) has indeed been transformed into a Giant.... Oh! I can't go on! Besides, you're never gonna believe what Heaven is Really Like once God has indeed brought on The Big One and Chris Murphy Actually Gets To TALK! Go see the show for yourself if you don't believe me. But, cross my heart and hope to cluck I have told nothing but the honest truth, So Help Me Colonel Sanders!


"Spring Chicken" (13 - 29 October)
Devanaughn Theater, Piano Factory Rear Parking Lot, 791 Tremont Street, BOSTON MA
1 (866)811-4111

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