Who you gonna call?! GHOSTBUSTERS! Well, when Weathervane Playhouse asks “Who’s gonna direct a farce?!” The answer is a robust, “MARC MORITZ!” No wonder. Moritz is a Broadway veteran, the founder/director of Giant Portions Improv Company and the perfect match for the very funny farce “Don’t Dress for Dinner” currently running at Weathervane Playhouse.
“Don’t Dress for Dinner” is a two-act play by French playwright Marc Camoletti, who also wrote the popular farce “Boeing-Boeing”. The English speaking rights were purchased by London producer Mark Furness, who commissioned playwright Robin Hawdon to do a major rewrite of the play. This version opened on Broadway in 2012.
So the journey begins as Bernard (Richard Worswick) is planning a romantic weekend with his chic Parisian mistress Suzanne (Dede Klein) in his charming converted French farmhouse, whilst his wife, Jacqueline (Bernadette Hisey), is away. He has arranged for Suzette (Ashley Bossard), a Cordon Bleu cook, to prepare gourmet delights, and has invited his best friend Robert (Scott K. Davis) along, too, to provide the alibi. It’s foolproof; what could possibly go wrong? Well….suppose Robert turns up not realizing quite why he has been invited. Suppose Robert and Jacqueline are secret lovers, and consequently determine that Jacqueline will NOT leave for the weekend. Suppose the cook has to pretend to be the mistress and the mistress is unable to cook. Suppose everyone’s alibi gets confused with everyone else’s. An evening of confusion ensues as Bernard and Robert improvise at breakneck speed.
This journey is delightful. The timing is spot on as this cast tackles the pace with aplomb. Worswick is a manic, high-pitched horn dog that charges this story like an overactive battery. He spends a lot of time yelling in a pitch higher than the ladies, and deserves a medal of honor for stress. Hisey is a great foil for her husband, while playing her own game of love charades, or slowly trying to unravel the truth which turns out to be a very funny adventure. Davis is a scream as winner of the “Best Friend Who Sleeps With Your Wife” award, and does it with deft comedic choices throughout the evening. Bossard has and is a ball, literally collecting tips from the males as she becomes a character chameleon who tries to save the butts of the egregious gentlemen. Klein appears, or I should say, her magnificent legs appear below a chassis of comedic brilliance. As the mistress turned cook, she serves up funny big-time. Manthey just kills it. Coming in late in the play, you wished he was there the whole time. He provides a hilarious cameo as he enters and commands the stage, as well as becoming a laugh generator the entire duration of his existence.
Act One sets it up. And Act Two is one of those wonderful experiences where you gut laugh many times. That is a compliment to the hard-working comedic actors on stage. Very enjoyable evening, or should I say, making me laugh at a matinee is good stuff. The crowd loved it.
The technical staff fired on all cylinders. Stage Manager Jeff Bixby called a great show. Alan Scott Ferrall did fine work as Lighting Designer and Technical Director, along with Kathy Kohl as Assistant Technical Director. Michelle McNeal and Barbie Trotter as Properties Co-Designers, Bill Morgan Sound Design, Jasen J. Smith provide excellent Costume Design, Scenic Designer Justyn Jaymes created a fabulous set to self-destruct on.
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$5-$21 Reserved Seating
1301 Weathervane Lane
Akron, Ohio 44313