Theatre Mirror Reviews - "Moon Over Buffalo"

THE THEATER MIRROR, New England's LIVE Theater Guide


"What Happened in Boston, Willie"

entire contents copyright 2005 by Tony Annicone

"Moon Over Buffalo"

Reviewed by Tony Annicone

Theatre Works' third show of their 22nd season is Ken Ludwig's farce, "Moon Over Buffalo". It is set in June, 1953 at the Erlanger Theatre in Buffalo, New York where George and Charlotte Hay are on tour with a repertory consisting of "Cyrano de Bergerac" and Noel Coward's "Private Lives". Fate has given this couple one more shot at starring roles in a movie epic of the Scarlet Pimpernal and director, Frank Capra himself is en route to catch their matinne performance. One of the problems is that George is drunk and isn't sure of what show he is doing, creating a mixture of both of them. Hilarious misunderstandings and madcap adventures ensue all night long during this comic romp. Director Mark Anderson keeps the pace of the show flowing and builds an actual moving stage where his actors perform the plays within a play and the 1950's costumes by Sharon Charette give the show its finishing touch to let the audience enjoy itself all night long.

The stage set is expertly built and moves easily out of sight so you can see the backstage area of the theater. Mark casts his show very well and his performers shine in their roles. Rick Concannon is a hoot as the drunken George who creates chaos in this farce. His leading lady is Connie Anderson as Charlotte who delivers her one liners and clever put downs expertly. Lisa Forsgard is hilarious as Charlotte's deaf mother who delivers one of the funniest lines when George falls off the stage, saying "That is where you belong in the pit". The most hilarious scene in this show is the "Private Lives" and "Cyrano" mixup sequence. Laura Ash as the Hays' daughter Roz delivers an energetic portrayal as an actress waiting for her fellow actor to appear onstage, only to find him dressed as Cyrano and not Elliot. This madcap scene gets laughs from start to finish and shows the excellent timing of the performers in it. Ed Benjamin is Roz's ex-boyfriend who is the manager of the acting troupe. They have great chemistry together and one of his funniest moments comes while he is trying to get George's pants on while George is drunk. Funny farcical gems supplied by Mark.

Rounding out the cast is Matt King as Roz's fiancee, Howard who is a weatherman, Diane Colburn as Eileen, a dippy actress who is pregnant and Christopher Kibbe as Howard, the lawyer who Charlotte loves or maybe not. Be sure to catch this crazy, fun filled show to see a topnotch cast deliver the goods to an appreciative audience.

MOON OVER BUFFALO ( 11 - 20 March)
78 Earle Street, WOONSOCKET, RI
1 (401) 766-1898