Theatre Mirror Reviews - "Greetings"

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"What Happened in Boston, Willie"


entire contents copyright 2001 by Tony Annicone

"Greetings"

Reviewed by Tony Annicone

Theatre Company's current show, "Greetings", is a hidden gem of a Christmas show. The story concerns Andy Gorski who brings home his Jewish, atheist fiancee, Randi Stein, to meet his sweet Catholic mother, Emily, his grouchy Catholic father, Phil and his severely retarded brother, Mickey who only says, "Wow" and "Oh, Boy".

Chaos ensues until Mickey is inhabited by a spirit, Lucius who brings the family together and heals their wounds.

Director/producer, Donna Adamonis casts her five performers very well. She brings the characters from arguing with each other to an understanding of their problems, giving the audience many funny and heart warming moments in the process. Stage manager, Jessica Rooney keeps things moving smoothly during the show, helping Donna and the cast achieve their goals.

Her five wonderful performers have varying acting experience but all of them deliver the goods to an appreciative crowd. Real life husband and wife, Leo and Sandra Barter play Phil and Emily Gorski. Leo, a seasoned actor plays the cranky, Archie Bunkerish father perfectly. His use of a cane, reminds you of Frasier Crane's dad. Leo plays the comic and dramatic moments with ease. Sandra makes an excellent stage debut in the role of Emily. She brings great warmth in her role towards her children and has the funniest line in the show when she explains how her husband really broke his hip.

Aaron Sokoll does a marvelous job as Andy, the older brother visiting home at Christmas. His first scene on an airplane with his girlfriend gets the show off to a humorous start when he comments on the pilot always saying "At this time".(Doug McElwain does the comic pilot's voiceover.) Aaron also shows the anguish at his father's disapproval and the love he feels for his mother, girlfriend and brother. His wrestling scene with Mickey is a good example of his love for his retarded brother. Andrea Tosone delivers a strong performance as Randi. She stands up to Phil's bullying her, shows her love to Andy and her understanding to Mickey. Andrea handles the change from a hard to softer person beautifully especially when she realizes it's time to make up with her own parents with Mickey's (Lucius') help.

Last but not least is Keith Goward who makes his stage debut as Mickey. This is the most difficult role in the show and Keith handles the transition from the retarded, Mickey to the wise, Lucius easily. The audience knows who he is playing by his gestures and facial expressions. Keith shines in his first of hopefully many future performance. So for a beautiful, heart warming and very funny holiday show, catch "Greetings", you'll be glad you did.

"Greetings" (till 17 November)
THEATRE COMPANY
One Harris Street, COVENTRY, RHODE ISLAND
1(401) 827-0091

THE THEATER MIRROR, New England's LIVE Theater Guide

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