Theater Info for the Washington DC region

Alice in Underwear: Deep, But Not What You’re Expecting

By • Jul 14th, 2006 • Category: Reviews

Listen to our review of Alice in Underwear as performed by Natural Theatricals [MP3 3:49 1.1MB].

Laura: Yesterday we saw the world premiere performance of Alice in Underwear performed by Natural Theatricals at the George Washington Masonic National Memorial in Alexandria, Virginia.

Mike: Alice in Underwear was written by Paula Alprin. It’s the story of a Manhattan theater critic who is bitter and abusive. She manages to get a coveted exclusive interview. Once she gets there, however, she learns that thing aren’t quite what she expected.

Laura: I thought this was an enjoyable show. It was definitely very character driven. It did give you pause to think and talk about how what you do affects the lives of other people around you.

Mike: I thought this was a good show. Unfortunately though, I thought it was a little too short. It was only one act long, a total of about ninety minutes long, without an intermission. I think it could have been strengthened if there could have been an first act maybe showing the critic and how she does her job. Maybe interacting with her family or interacting with some of her co-workers or interacting with the people at the theaters that she works with. We kind of get thrown into it cold and learn all about her as she shows up for this interview. The representatives of Sue Z. are talking with her the whole time and that works out fine. I think it would have been more complete if we could have learned more about her before her interview.

Laura: The set was good. Because it was a character driven show, there wasn’t a lot of emphasis on the set which I think is fine. The four representatives of Sue Z. were all in black and white. Alison came in wearing blue.

Mike: Alison’s dress was a nice tourquoise. It was a strong contrast to the set itself which was a lots of black and white colors along with the costumes of the other characters. That was nice visually. There was also a really strong use of lighting.

Laura: The main character was Alison played by Paula Alprin. She gave a really strong performance. She had a lot of emotion on her face when she was talking to the other four representatives of Sue Z. You could tell in every fiber of her being that she was ticked and didn’t want to be there.

Mike: And there were four representatives of Sue Z. at the theater that Alison was meeting at: Chester was played by Colin H. Smith; Maude was played by Laura E. Quenzel; Rupert was played by Joshua Steinberg; Dorsey was played by Jennifer Reitz. They worked really well together. They were very manipulative as a whole. The four representatives of Sue Z. were also very good at getting Alison to dig down deep into herself and to expose her. That of course goes right into the title of Alice in Underwear. There is no real nudity or undressing that takes place other than mentally when Alison has to think about some things that she really doesn’t want to think through.

Paula Alprin (Alison), Jennifer Reitz (Dorsey), Joshua Steinberg (Rupert), Laura E. Quenzel (Maude), Colin H. Smith (Chester)

Laura: Paula Alprin was the author of Alice in Underwear as well as the main character. One scene towards the end of the play she had a long monologue that she did really well.

Mike: Alice in Underwear is playing through July 30th at the George Washington Masonic National Memorial in Alexandria, Virginia. It’s playing on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at eight PM. And Saturdays and Sundays at 2 PM.

Laura: This play has a lot of deep meanings in it so once you’ve seen this show feel free to leave a comment on our website at

Mike: And now, on with the show.

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started ShowBizRadio in August 2005 because they love live theater. They each have both performed in and worked behind the scenes in DC area productions, as well as earned a Career Studies Certificate in Theater from Northern Virginia Community College. Mike & Laura are each members of the American Theatre Critics Association, and Mike is a member of the Online News Association.

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