Review: LOVE LIKE TUESDAY at Faction of Fools Theatre Company

The production runs through March 11th.

By: Mar. 05, 2023
Review: LOVE LIKE TUESDAY at Faction of Fools Theatre Company
Review: LOVE LIKE TUESDAY at Faction of Fools Theatre Company
L-R Mattew Pauli, Jordan Essex, Andrew Quilpa & Jasmine Proctor in Love Like Tuesday. Photo courtesy of the production.

Faction of Fools Theatre Company's production of the play, Love Like Tuesday, is a story about a high school's lunch lady and the different happenings of being in love. This romantic comedy is told through the style of what is known as "Commedia dell'Arte" - a Renaissance-era form of theatre where the actors utilize different masks to distinguish their characters and explore their creativity with acting. With a cast of only 8 actors, they tackle the challenge of telling the story containing at least 16 named characters and each one is completely different from the other.

Being such a unique style of performance, the masks can throw you off a bit at first, but then you realize it relates directly to the craft of the script and makes the story come alive even more. It replaces what some productions struggle with when simply relying on makeup to portray a character. Each mask was made specifically for the age and personality of what was written - not necessarily what may have been exact to the actors. I also enjoyed that aspect where there was a broad spectrum of how each character acted and fit into the story, but it was still only done by half of the amount of people that could be utilized. Seeing the actors approach the challenge of first having a mask on the whole show, and then having to switch in between masks, costume pieces, and characters was very exciting to witness.

Review: LOVE LIKE TUESDAY at Faction of Fools Theatre Company
Mary Myers in Love Like Tuesday. Photo courtesy of the production.

Leading this cast is the multi-talented Mary Myers as loveable lunch lady, Doreen (Reenie) Dawkins. Myers clearly has such a fun time putting the mask on and being Doreen each night, and it's so enjoyable getting to see her exercise the different emotions that this character faces. From frazzled lunch lady to hopeless romantic, Myers stuck the landing on every mark that Doreen was making in this story. Alongside her was Danny Cackley as Cameron Noodle, the new substitute teacher that makes Doreen's love life a bit more complicated. Cackley was equally as entertaining to watch as we see he may be stuck in his prime of peaking high school many years ago. Watching him help this character navigate this new chapter in his life felt very authentic and spoke to the difficulties and struggles that make these types of stories a romantic comedy.

This cast was truly a joy to watch, especially with the difficult tasks at hand to make this story flow smoothly. Playing one, two, or even three characters is the wonderful group of Jordan Essex, Bri Houtman, Matthew Pauli, Jasmine Proctor, Andrew Quilpa, and Kathryn Zoerb. They brought the story to life, playing characters that taught Doreen a lot throughout her journey. They are the backbone of this production.

Review: LOVE LIKE TUESDAY at Faction of Fools Theatre Company
L-R Andrew Quilpa, Jasmine Proctor & Jordan Essex in Love Like Tuesday. Photo courtesy of the production.

Besides the talented group of actors contributing to the fun and unique story, what really brought everything together for me was the technical aspect - the lights and set. Firstly, I was very impressed with how the space was utilized. Being in a small black box theater can be a daunting task, but the creativity certainly flowed through the team of cast and crew. At first glance, the set is already eye-catching and impressive with colorful flyers and papers painting the walls and lockers of the stage. Then, throughout the show we see set pieces come out of every side of the set, creating multiple settings while still allowing the audience to use their imagination to fill in the gaps. It was so entertaining and enjoyable to watch everyone maneuver from scene to scene with a set that seemed rather static at first.

Review: LOVE LIKE TUESDAY at Faction of Fools Theatre Company
L-R Andrew Quilpa, Mary Myers & Kathryn Zoerb in Love Like Tuesday. Photo courtesy of the production.

Lighting certainly goes a long way as well, and it was perfectly utilized throughout this performance. You can easily associate colors with feelings - red with anger, blue with sadness - but we don't always think about how to translate those overwhelming feelings in theatre. Already, we have the wonderful contributions from the cast utilizing every part of themselves as they can to indicate their feelings, but we get that indication as well when we see the lights transition into a bright pink - indicating the feeling of love, or blue - indicating discomfort and sadness. It can entirely modify the mood of the scene, and it also helps to portray when moments in the show are internal to a specific character versus when they're back in the scene interacting with others. It was a great touch utilizing this technical aspect.

Review: LOVE LIKE TUESDAY at Faction of Fools Theatre Company
Danny Cackley, Mary Myers & company in Love Like Tuesday. Photo courtesy of the production.

I recommend going to see this show if you're in for a laugh and are wanting to experience a new kind of theatre. Who knows what you might learn about life or yourself through this unconventional story?

Running time: 2 hours and 20 minutes, including a 10-mintue intermission.

Love Like Tuesday runs through March 11th, 2023 at Capitol Hill Arts Workshop located at 545 7th St SE, Washington, DC 20003.

Closed-caption performances are available on select days.

Audience members are required to wear a mask during the performance.




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