BWW Reviews: SEX, LIES AND SOCIAL MEDIA Presents 5 Stories About Modern Relationships
Mariah Bonner strikes quite a figure as the narrator of SEX, LIES, AND SOCIAL MEDIA, composed of 5 short plays by The Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights (ALAP) and presetned as part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival 2014. Encouraging the audience to post on social media about the show, many in the audience were more than happy to oblige! Each of the 5 plays poses questions about sexual orientation, attraction, and how social media has affected our relationships. Each story is simple in the telling, but deep in human interaction. Tickets are available at http://hff14.org/1583
HAPPY AND GAY by Mary Steelsmith, directed by Susan Stangl, centers on two women decorating a church hall for a gay wedding reception. Veronica (Mary Steelsmith) is the more conservative of the two, confused and disappointed that her church and Reverend is allowing such an event to take place within the walls. Betty (AnnaLisa Errickson) is more modern in her thinking but laughable in her terminology. The women banter back and forth about Pat and Chris getting married, but we never know if the couple is male or female. Perhaps their constant references to "bitch-slapping" is a hint? No doubt Archie fans will think of Veronica and Betty as the best of friends, but the play leaves it up in the air if they are really more than that but not able to acknowledge it for fear of bring "Lesbanese."
CASEY 229 by Elin Hampton, directed by David Fury, features yhr suthor and director as Pam and Ken, two lonely people in love with the same man. The big difference is that Pam is married to Frank and Ken is in love with Butch online who he has never met. Of course Frank and Butch are one and the same person. Seems the two men convinced themselves that the other was a woman, a real possibility when chatting with strangers online. Social media can have it drawbacks when it comes to falling in love, but perhaps you can find the real thing when you least expect it.
The most laughable of all 5 shows was REBECCA'S BROKEN LESS THAN SIGN NUMBER 3 by Ron Burch, directed by Rose Desena, featuring Diana Romo, Oriko Ikeda, and Dan Heber.. Those familiar with online emoticons will understand the title, and each of the three characters spout online terminology describing their Facebook chats. Funny thing is in today's social media world, their conversation can be totally understood!
UNCOMFORTABLE SEX by Lorin Howard, directed by Iris Merlis, focuses on an older woman (Joanna Miles) attempting to get into the online dating world via the help of her granddaughter (Kristen Gull) who arranges a date for her with Marty (TJ Castronovo). Their first meeting conversation will ring true for anyone who has met someone in person for the first time, and the twist at the end will make you thankful that age is no barrier to sexual imagination.
THE DEVIL MADE ME DO IT by Dan Berkowitz eho also directs and portrays the man in the play, features a middle of the night encounter between a succubus (Mariah Bonner) and the man she wants to seduce as he sleeps. As they negotiate the type of sex that will occur between them, everything seems to be working out well for both of them. But unfortunately for her, all is not as it seems! Another great twist at the end of this one!
Founded in 1993, The Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights (ALAP) is a support and service organization dedicated to addressing the professional needs of the Los Angeles playwriting community. ALAP is an all-volunteer project of Community Partners. For more information, please visit www.LAPlaywrights.org.