Rumors makes a scene

Nov. 6, 2004, midnight | By Anuja Shah | 15 years, 2 months ago

Fall play sure to have audiences talking

When comic cover-ups and crazy circumstances collide, accusations begin to fly. Such is the case in Neil Simon's Rumors , Blair's fall play. The show, set in modern-day New York, is current. The ensuing chaos is timeless.

It's well into the evening of Myra and Charlie Brock's tenth wedding anniversary, Charlie's been shot and Myra's nowhere to be found—and nobody knows why. The couple's puzzled guests frantically search for an explanation while attempting to hide the bad news from the other partygoers. However, a series of unfortunate events serves to further complicate the evening, and by the time the police show up, panic (and that last glass of vodka) begin to set in with hilarious consequences.

The play begins as Chris (freshman Brittany Allen) and Ken Gorman (senior Alex Gersh) argue over how, or whether, to explain to their friends that Charlie's been shot and Myra's missing. While Allen frets believably (she gets even funnier throughout the show) and Gersh makes a charmingly ridiculous attempt to wrest control of the situation, Claire (sophomore Anna Szapiro) and Len Ganz (sophomore Jason Meer) storm in. Szapiro's mix of cattiness and cool work well opposite Meer's volatile, albeit amusing, frustration.

Factor in clueless Cookie (senior Alicia Posner) and patient Ernie Cusack (senior John Visclosky), and the endearingly frumpy pair unwittingly contributes to the mounting chaos. By the time Cassie (freshman Maile Zox) and Glen Cooper (senior Gabe Pinkney) arrive, a bit of melodrama is all it takes to have the cover-up bursting at the seams (and splitting audience members' sides).

Each character's unique personal problems provide for some running shtick throughout the play. Cookie's general confusion, coupled with her back pains, make the character herself a bit of a joke throughout the play. Likewise, Len's bemoaning of his ruined BMW makes him the butt of a few rather unfortunate comic moments.

The set for Rumors is conceptually simple: It is the interior of a suburban home. Where this might have been a daunting challenge, Blair's stage crew has stepped up to produce a working two-story interior that is convincingly residential. Simple décor and accent pieces are lively splashes of color against the cream walls.

The show's lighting and sound design are fairly straightforward, as well. While the lighting lends the room a slight sense of warmth, it is functional, not dramatic. Sound effects are used to emulate everyday sounds, and music is only used once during the show.

There's no denying that Rumors is funny. Done properly, the show's worthy of at least one laugh every minute. By that standard, the Blair actors do the show justice and more. The actors' chemistry, claws and just-plain-craziness make this Rumor something worth talking about.

Rumors will run Nov. 5, 6, 12 and 13, at 7:30 p.m. in the Blair auditorium. Tickets are $7 for adults and $3 for students and seniors.

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Anuja Shah. Anuja "Otto" Shah, a Junior in the CAP, -is thoroughly excited to be part of SCO, -enjoys the word "fiasco", -aspires to be monstrously cool, -remains prepared to settle for being vaguely nifty, and -probably owes you money, but has fled the country. More »

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