BWW Reviews: Theatre Tallahassee's PRIVATE LIVES Witty, Romantic Fun
Now in their second weekend of performances, Theatre Tallahassee's production of Private Lives shows no sign of a lost edge. Performing Noel Coward's razor sharp script, the production, directed by Brian Davis, is a joy to sit through. Through the cast's incredible chemistry, the timing of a well oiled machine, and each performer's individual flair, Davis' production of Private Lives is a romantic journey of love that delivers the wit and charm of each lover with a lot of laughs.
Noel Coward's classic is a simple enough story- Elyot and Sibyl are honeymooning, when Elyot realizes his ex-wife Amanda is next door with her new husband, Victor. The old couple recognizes their passions haven't burnt out, running off to Paris to see if the flame is still strong.
Bob Myers and Scott Mock are as phenomenal as they were in our preview of the production. Mock has upped his razor delivery, and his flustered approach seems more honed than it was. Myers chemistry with his flames, both new and old, is incredible to see come together- working with the cast, he's more superb than before.
It's a joy to see both Samm Charboneau and Southie Williamson in their roles, as Amanda and Sibyl respectively. Charboneau is a devilish source of blasé sass and allure, working magic off of Myers and Mock's characters. She owns the stage with every entrance, lounging across the divan like a beautiful painting, all while stomping across the egos of the men around her. Williamson is wonderfully explosive alongside the muted cast, a frustrated Sibyl to bash across Myers' Elyot.
Constance Clineman, as the French Louise, is funnier yet. Her presence in the third act brings a sprinkle of a farce to the show's climax, and her over-the-top actions can't fail to bring thunderous laughter, her final exit a standing ovation in and of itself.
As for technical work, Derek Nieves set is still as grand, detailed, and balanced as ever. Todd Teagarden's lighting pops well, and Theresa Davis' costuming is pristine. Thankfully, Heather Marks has perfected her sound design and balanced the music out since previews, giving the show a final touch of realism and perfection- her sound is wonderful and sounds as if it was truly coming from the jukebox or the hotel rooms they share.
While Private Lives is remarkably short (a simple hour forty minutes), it seems even quicker with the laughs never stopping. With the second weekend running now, and a final (Valentine's day weekend) still to come, there's no time like the present to rush back to the early 20th century comedy. Davis' Private Lives is a remarkable comedy, that rescues dated humor to delivers a charming romance with the perfect splash of humor.
Private Lives will run Jan. 26th-Feb. 12th at Theatre Tallahassee. Tickets can be purchased online or at the door.