Creative Loafing Best of the Bay
Sir Alan Ayckbourn (Norman Conquests, Absurd Person Singular, Absent Friends), one of the most popular and prolific playwrights in the world, goes deeper and darker in this play about a bored housewife named Susan who is married to a stodgy vicar.
After regaining consciousness from a comical accident, Susan experiences a series of hallucinations in which her tedious, loveless and oppressive everyday life is replaced by a fantasy world where she is the ideal wife and mother of an ideal family. The two halves of her life eventually collide with hilarity and heartbreak.
Woman in Mind opens in a traditional English garden where Susan (Ami Sallee Corley) wakes up after she stepped on the tooth end of a garden rake and knocked herself out. She is tended to by the bumbling-yet-sweet local GP Bill Windsor (Shawn Paonessa ) whose words slowly turn from complete gibberish to clear English as she regains consciousness and her composure.
The opening scene, like the play that follows it, is both wonderfully comic and deeply unsettling. Following her initial recovery, Susan lapses and begins to hallucinate. Her real world – inhabited by nebbish husband (Jason Evans), eccentric sister-in-law (Kari Goetz) and distant son (Stephen Ray ) – is replaced with a world populated by a loving husband (Steve Garland), perfect daughter (Caitlin Eason) and dapper brother (Matt Lunsford).
Her simple English garden morphs into a vast estate, where poorly-made coffee is replaced with flutes of Dom Perignon. In all aspects of the production the boundary between the real and the ideal world is blurred and broken until the entire experience is simultaneously surreal and harrowing.
Just a week removed from a stellar review of Sir Alan Acykbourn’s Woman in Mind (only 4 performances remain!), three Jobsite ensemble members are recognized
The first review of our production of Woman in Mind printed today in The Tampa Tribune, and it’s a thoroughly positive one. Here’s a pullout
- David M. Jenkins – Director
- Erica Porch – Production Stage Manager
- Ami Sallee Corley – Susan
- Jason Evans – Gerald
- Steve Garland – Andy
- Kari Goetz – Muriel
- Matt Lunsford – Tony
- Caitlin Eason – Lucy
- Shawn Paonessa – Bill
- Stephen Ray – Rick
- Jaime Giangrande-Holcom – Rehearsal Stage Manager
- Xylina Golding – Rehearsal Stage Manager
- David M. Jenkins – Set & Sound Design
- John Lott – Light Design
- Matt Lunsford – Master Carpenter/Dialect Coach
- Katrina Stevenson – Costume Design
- Brian M. Smallheer – Technical Director
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