BWW Review: RIPCORD at Seven Angels Theatre
On Saturday, November 10, I had the pleasure of seeing RIP CORD at the Seven Angels Theatre in Waterbury, CT. This play was written by David Lindsey-Abaire and directed by Brendan Burke. The acting is amazing all around from this cast of six who gel together excellently both in comedic and serious scenes.
The story opens in a double room of a New Jersey senior living facility. Abby (Marina Re), a resident with an attitude converses with respectful orderly Jonny (Jovan Davis) regarding Abby's desire to have her new roommate Marilyn (Peggy Cosgrave) sent to a different room, on the grounds that Abby is annoyed by Marilyn's alleged constant gabbing and would rather be in the room by herself, which is what Abby has been generally used to at the facility. When Marilyn arrives, she comes across as very pleasant and likeable, despite Abby's attitude towards her.
The scene changes stand out as original and highly entertaining. The first scene change is arguably the greatest single scene change I have ever seen, as it instantaneously turns this comedy into a horror story that gets experienced by the entire audience. The stage lights are instantly turned off and replaced by a strobe light creating multicolored effects, as curtains are being moved across the stage at a rapid pace, and new cast members appear as part of a haunted house within the show. This all happens so suddenly that it appears as if the entire theatre has just become haunted. This dramatic contrast to what has been a comedy up until this point further enhances the shock value. Cast members Julia Register, Ed Rosini, and Ben Paul Williams first appear in this haunted house scene, excelling in these roles, as they also do in their later roles in which they have been double cast.
In the room of the senior living facility, Abby has the bed closest to the window. Marilyn wants that bed, while Abby wants Marilyn out of the room. They decide to make a bet in which the winner gets her way. The challenge was for either Abby to make Marilyn angry or for Marilyn to scare Abby. Whoever succeeds first wins. This leads to some amusing and sometimes disturbing antics from both women towards the other. Marina Re and Peggy Cosgrave both play their respective roles in such a convincing manner that it is easy to forget that they are not two real feuding seniors. With Marilyn deliberately portrayed as the more likeable of the two characters, the audience will naturally be more prone to favoring her in the challenge. Who actually wins, if either of them win? Come to the show to find out! I predict that you will enjoy it tremendously, as I did!
I highly recommend RIP CORD which is scheduled to continue to run at the Seven Angels Theatre in Waterbury, CT through December 2, 2018. For times and tickets, please go to https://sevenangelstheatre.secure.force.com/ticket/.
Photo by Paul Roth