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BWW Review: Torrance Theatre Company Continues Play-At-Home Online Series with KALAMAZOO

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BWW Review: Torrance Theatre Company Continues Play-At-Home Online Series with KALAMAZOO

Torrance Theatre Company's newest venture, PLAY-AT-HOME, presents a series of free online theatrical experiences, each designed to entertain audiences during the stay-at-home orders. All artists involved, including cast, crew, and technical staff are volunteering their time and talent to bring different plays to life via online platforms every other Sunday so you can enjoy great entertainment from the comfort and safety of your own home, Their hope is to bring a little laughter and levity into the world so that together we can still enjoy part of what makes theatre so special to each of us.

On Sunday, July 12 at 6pm, I tuned in for the third play in the series, KALAMAZOO, BWW Review: Torrance Theatre Company Continues Play-At-Home Online Series with KALAMAZOOwritten by Michelle Kholos Brooks and Kelly Younger, originally developed in 2014 at Pacific Resident Theatre in Venice, CA. The Torrance Theatre Company production was directed by Gary Kresca and featured real-life married couple Diana Mann and John Mann as Peg and Irv, two quirky but endearing baby-boomers who bravely venture into the world of modern dating thanks to their children urging them to register on the Silver Fox Dating Service Website. Both have lost their long-term spouses and hope to find someone with whom they can spend the golden years of their lives.

BWW Review: Torrance Theatre Company Continues Play-At-Home Online Series with KALAMAZOOBut it soon becomes apparent as they get to know each other during online chats and then in person at El Gringo Mexican Restaurant on their first date that these two have little in common other than loneliness and the hope for a better future. But soon these opposites attract and discover love isn't any easier the second time around in this romantic comedy about life's second act. And thanks to the talents of the real-life married couple portraying Irv and Peg, eventually it becomes very apparent you're never too old to be young by taking on new challenges which open new doors to life's wonders.

Director Gary Kresca was able to take advantage of Diana Mann and John Mann BWW Review: Torrance Theatre Company Continues Play-At-Home Online Series with KALAMAZOOappearing together, guaranteeing the intimacy needed in several scenes as the two learned to coexist. Each scene was introduced with a graphic announcing the scene's setting, which allowed the actors to change costumes and the technical staff to alter the background and sound effects to perfectly suit the scenes. (Silver Fox Dating Service Website, El Gringo Mexican Restaurant, Several Hours and Many Drinks Later, A Beach, A Living Room where they meet each other's children, A Strip Club, The Four Seasons for a very comical sample wedding cake tasting session, and ending with a road trip Somewhere in Michigan.)

BWW Review: Torrance Theatre Company Continues Play-At-Home Online Series with KALAMAZOOThe final play in the series is ALL THE DAYS, written by Sharyn Rothstein, directed by Rachel Baumsten, the reading features Melody Cohen, Geraldine Fuentes, Nathan Gebhard, Andy Kallock, David McGee, Declan Sullivan and Amanda Webb, to be presented on Sunday, July 26 at 6pm. The story centers on Miranda, who has done everything in her power to create a family completely different than the one from which she came. But after a painful loss, Miranda suffers a lapse of judgment and invites her hilarious, complicated, and self-destructive mother Ruth to stay with her before her son's bar mitzvah. As other needy family members show up in search of connection and second chances, will they all stay in one piece for the 13-year-old's festivities? It's a warm and heart-filled comedy about the scars of childhood and finding love, all grown up.

Audience members must register to attend each show at www.TorranceTheatreCompany.com/playathome and will receive a private link via email which will allow them access to the online performances. There is no cost to view the plays, but donations are encouraged! It's a great way to be entertained and support one of our great local theater groups! And with the popularity of the series, chances are more plays will be announced on the schedule following the Sunday, July 26 performance.

BWW Review: Torrance Theatre Company Continues Play-At-Home Online Series with KALAMAZOOThe Torrance Theatre Company is a program of the Cultural Services Division of the Torrance Community Services Department, sponsored in part of Friends of Torrance Theatre Company. Those in the Torrance area are encouraged to take advantage of the Downtown Does Dining Al Fresco on downtown streets which are blocked off on Sundays to offer outdoor dining 6' apart to assist local restaurants to stay in business during the pandemic. Diners can also pick up dinner and enjoy it at home during the Play-at-Home shows at 6pm every other Sunday night. Dinner and a play has never been easier!

KALAMAZOO screenshots by Shari Barrett


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From This Author Shari Barrett