BWW Reviews: Bergen County Players GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS Still Relevant in 2011

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In the world of David Mamet's GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS, the ABC's of the real estate business stand for ‘Always Be Closing'. In fact, a sign displaying just such a philosophy can be seen hanging from the set wall of the Bergen County Players production of this award winning play, currently on stage at Oradell's Little Firehouse Theater. This skewed work ethic serves as the driving force that compels the play's characters to lie, cheat and steal from one another without any regard for the consequences. Throughout this two-act drama, the actors successfully bring an intense realism to the stage, taking audience members on a journey filled with humor, conflict and ultimately, melancholy.

This is the first time the Bergen County Players have taken on a work by Mamet and both the cast and creative team have effectively met the challenges of producing this Pulitzer Prize winning drama. Director Alyson Cohn was thrilled to take the helm of the production. Cohn strongly believes that the play has great relevance in today's times and cites the collapse of the economy and the greed of both the financial and real estate markets as proof. With unethical institutions being rewarded with bailouts from the federal government rather than jail time, Cohn affirms, "It is time to ask ourselves "What has happened to the ‘American Dream'?"

Aside from managing the heavy themes of the play, veteran actor Steven Reyngoudt, who plays the role of Dave Moss, concedes that of all the shows he has performed in, learning the dialogue for Mamet's work was by far his biggest challenge. Unlike most plays in which one actor does not speak until another has finished his line, Mamet incorporates interruptions and overlapping dialogue into his script in order to drive home the point that as far as each character is concerned, only what they have to say really matters. How did Reyngoudt overcome the challenge? "It comes down to great chemistry between actors and learning to work off each other", he explains.

At the end of last Friday evening's performance, audience members were treated to a Talk Back with the cast and creative team. After a lively and informative Q & A session, director Cohn explained to theatergoers why a play written more than a quarter of a century ago still has great significance today. "The idea that greed seems to rule defines the soul of Mamet's characters, the climate of the country in 1984 and the reality of our country today. It is as topical and has as important a message as it did 27 years ago."

Bergen County Players production of GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS is currently running at Oradell's Little Firehouse Theatre, 298 Kinderkamack Road, Oradell through April 16th. Performances are Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 pm, Sundays at 2:00 pm.

For ticket sales and further information, please call the box office at (201) 261 - 4200 or visit www.bcplayers.org

 

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