Arts and Entertainment

Island Stage Left's production of 'Rabbit Hole' is compelling | Review

The cast of
The cast of 'Rabbit Hole': Standing from left, Dan Mayes and Krista Strutz; sitting from left, Ann Cozzalio, Carolyn Marie Monroe. Not pictured: Will Tranfo.
— image credit: Island Stage Left

What a wonderful job Director Helen Machin-Smith has done with Island Stage Left presentations through the years.

"Rabbit Hole," the winner of the 2007 Pulitzer Prize and five Tony awards, now being performed to perfection by a cast of five actors -- three of them professional -- is solid proof of that accolade.

The play, written by David Lindsay-Abaire, is performed in the Roche Harbor Pavilion, using furnishings provided by Home Port Flooring and Design, Compost It and Consignment Treasures. This one setting of a suburban home is sufficient to contain the humor, the love, the anger and catastrophe that easily could befall any family any where.

Normally, it is difficult to relate to a play where you are so close to the action. Not so in this case. You almost felt you were part of it. The set painters — Elizabeth Farr, and Krista, Ashley and Ted Strutz — made it work. The construction crew headed by Steve

Gutmann comprised Farr, James Krall, Mark Cunningham, Daniel Mayes, Declan and Hayden Place, Ted Strutz, Douglas Schirmer and Wocka Hubber.

Your heart will go out to every character in this family affair. Will Tranfo plays Jason Willette, the young man involved in the car accident which is at the root of the family's anguish.

"Will is an integral part of the show and a respected member of the cast," Machin-Smith wrote in an e-mail.

Mayes, Equity player, is superb as Howie, the father. And speaking of family, Krista Strutz, who plays his wife, Becca, in an unbelievably realistic manner, happens to be the daughter of Ann Cozzalio, who is her stage mother, Nat ... a perfect fit.

Carolyn Marie Monroe, a new face to this writer, has a somewhat lighter and heart-warming role as sister of the bereaved Becca. As Izzy, her own troubles are not uncommon in today's society. Becca's costumes, by Teri McPadden of Be Chic Boutique, were certainly appropriate. Izzy's clothes, as her maternal state became known over the short time covered by the few weeks of the play, spoke volumes.

These plays are free to all. Donations are accepted. Be sure to get there early the next few Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays in the evenings at 7:30 p.m. (no performance Thanksgiving Day) and 4 p.m. Sundays. Through Nov. 29.

Do not miss it!

— Contact Howard Schonberger at 378-5696 or hschonberger@sanjuanjournal.com

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