City Nights Dinner Theatre's current show, "Run For Your Wife" takes place in two homes in different parts of London. Cab driver, John Smith(Tom DiMaggio) has been injured and is taken home to his wife, Mary(Maria Tavarozzi) by Detective Sgt. Troughton(Nishan Lawton) while his second wife Barbara (Camille Terilli) waits for him in his second home.Throw in two neighbors from the different homes, Stanley(Chris Gaulin) and Bobby(JasonPalin), another policeman(Mark Silberstein) and a pushy newspaper photographer(Justin Foster) and you have the ingredients for the crazy mistaken identity, name calling, innuendoes to follow in this rib tickling British farce.
Director David Jepson creates the two homes with different colored purple and green flats to convey the two separate playing areas. His direction of the opening pacing and pantomiming of the both wives is brilliant creating the illusion need to pull off this difficult farce. He has cast the right people in the show and their performances are a reflection of his outstanding direction. Gales of laughter greet them during the show. David's excellence still shines forth after doing theater for over forty years!
Tom DiMaggio plays the demanding role of John Smith. He runs on and off the stage continuously thinking up new lies to meet each situation he meets due to his bigamy. His funniest scene is when he eats the newspaper article that has his photo and Mary's photo in it. Tom grabs the paper several times and finally ends up eating it. One of the many funny moments in the show. The bandage on his head throughout especially after having sex is comical and his overall performance will envoke much laughter.
The two wives are expertly played by Maria Tavorozzi and Camille Terilli. Their acting as British wives is poetry in motion. The beginning pantomiming is perfect and the line delivery matches it. Maria plays the more demure wife until she pops some pills swearing and calling people names. The scene where she gets dragged off stage is hysterical especially when her breasts are grabbed during it.(How she and Mark keep straight faces during it is a mystery to me) Camille plays the sexier wife in a green negligée. Her attacking John and dragging him into the bedroom is hysterical as are her scenes with the tres gay upstairs neighbor Bobby.John says she is a transvestite called Lofty and says Mary is a nun. Both women handle their accents superbly and maintain them throughout. Very funny performances!
The two detectives are played by stage veteran Mark Silberstein and Nishan Lawton. Both men handle their straight-laced roles very well. Mark's laugh is hysterical as he describes his wife as gruesome and his own pet name which is unprintable! It is used several times during the show by different characters. His dry sense of humor comes forth in his characterization. Nishan handles his role well too. When he calls John and his neighbor Stanley pansies and accuses others of being gay as well. Both of them are funny in this farce.
However the two biggest scene stealers in the show are Chris Gaulin as Sydney and Jason Palin as Bobby. Chris has the best lines in the show and he plays each one of them to their utmost. His facial expressions and line delivery are excellent especially when he's being accused of being gay and of being John Smith. His interactions with all the other characters are right on the money. A very talented young man! Jason's portrayal of the gay neighbor is hysterical from start to finish. He flits in and out of each scene prancing perfectly and displaying flaming movements at all times with his gestures and his walk. Great job, guys.
Playing the small role of the reporter is Justin Foster who is only on briefly but he makes it memorable just the same. He is headed for Hartford Conservatory in September to perfect his craft. Kudos to everyone who makes this farce funny and enjoyable for one and all