Review: CASH ON DELIVERY Delivers at TheatreWorks New Milford

TheatreWorks New Milford's production of CASH ON DELIVERY is a hilarious evening not to be missed.

By: May. 15, 2023
Review: CASH ON DELIVERY Delivers at TheatreWorks New Milford

Quick. Fast. Constantly on the move. When to speed up and when to slow down. When to be short, sweet, and to the point, and when to take your time to engage the audience and let the reality of what just happened sink in in agonizing detail. Pause. Beat. Pacing, yes. Like a heart racing during a marathon in the early hours when it was resting a mere hour ago, the pacing of a show can make it or break it- Especially when it comes to the genre of British farce. Pacing is one thing that TheatreWorks New Milford got absolutely right in their current production of Cash on Delivery, by Michael Cooney.

A quick, witty farce about defrauding the government and mistaken identity, director Gene Golaszewski brought together a stellar cast, an effective set, and an eye for pacing to create a delightful evening with Cash on Delivery. In a script that progresses forward rapidly and a plot that twists and turns in a labyrinth of confusion, the cast never leaves the audience floundering or lost; between pausing for laughs, moments of recall, and sometimes the literal need to take a breath, the audience enjoyed every minute of the ride. The onstage comradery of Joel Michael and Patrick Kelly- who played the notorious defrauder, Eric Swan, and reluctant accomplice, Norman MacDonald, respectively- kept the audience enraptured and cheering on our two protagonists, for whether you wanted Eric to get away with his crimes or just wanted to see Norman make it to his Saturday wedding, you were invested in this duo from beginning to end. Among the many brilliant costars to this comedy of errors, the desperate dedication to his duty of Ron Malyszka's Mr. Jenkins; the physical commitment to the bit of Jeff Rossman's Uncle George; and the overwhelming- if obliviously ignorant- concern of Marnie D'uva's Linda Swan constantly throw more complications to the ever-growing fires under our leading duo's toes, thus upping the pressure, the complexity, and the hilarity of Mr. Swan's many years of financial deception.

But nothing exists in a vacuum, and the simplicity of the living room set, constructed by Shagbargh Scenery, added character to the show without being too busy. Many times with walled room sets, productions are tempted to fill it with too many decorations. These rooms end up looking too busy and actually detract from the experience. But Golaszewski's set for Cash on Delivery did not fall into this trap. The necessities are there: loveseat, windowsill, chair, curtains, and an end table for the phone, but with only select extra décor, the audience could focus on the action; A focus they need given how complex of a situation Mr. Swan finds himself in.

Lastly, I'd be remiss to not point out the costume design by Sue Haneman. Every actor (in this case, meaning a participant in an event) has a unique job and Haneman does a wonderful job of blending their status and profession with their many personalities. But beyond just standard costumes, there are also moments throughout the show where costumes get changed for plot purposes: which is a fancy way of saying "no spoilers"! Whether clothes get burnt and torn, put on the wrong person, or even taken off, Haneman's costume design is built to remind the audience who these characters are as they come and go with fluidity and ease, but also remind the audience what these characters have gone through as the story weaves and knots its way along.

To put it simply: Sit back and enjoy. Golaszewski's production of Cash on Delivery is meant to take you on a fast-paced journey, but the cast and crew make this complicated misunderstanding easy to follow so that all you have to do is laugh along! You have two more weekends to catch Cash on Delivery, with evening shows on Fridays and Saturdays from May 12th - 27th, with a special matinee on Sunday, May 21st.


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