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Review of The Time of Your Life by the Providence Players

By • Oct 16th, 2006 • Category: Reviews, The Time of Your Life

Listen to Lisa Kay Morton and Lynne Bouchard’s review of Providence Player’s production of William Saroyan’s The Time of Your Life. [MP3 3:50 1.1MB] Yes, this is the show that I am in, and yes, I did meet Lisa Kay and Lynne after the show, but they were not influenced or bribed in recording their thoughts about the show. Feel free to leave your own thoughts on the show in the comments after their review. View the Time of Your Life Photo Galleries.

Lisa Kay: We just returned from Fairfax, Virginia where we saw Providence Player‘s production of William Saroyan’s The Time of Your Life.

Lynne: The show opened this Friday and plays Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 PM through October 28th and Sunday matinees at 2 PM on October 15th and October 22nd.

Lisa Kay: The play takes place in 1939. It’s that time period right before World War II. It is a cross section of Americans who wander through a waterfront saloon in San Francisco searching for meaning and happiness. There are also of things we really enjoyed about his show. It was fun to see a wide variety of characters coming on stage. I know there are a lot of things you really liked, Lynne. What were some of your favorites tonight?

Lynne: Well, I would have to say when you first walk into the theatre the thing you notice first is the set. The set was just unbelievable. It was just beautiful. For me the standout performances were John Coscia as Kit Carson. He brought so much energy and personality to the stage.

Lisa Kay: He was fun.

Lynne: He really was. Patrick David as Joe was very believable. As a character study I really enjoyed his character. Barbara Gertzog played Mary.

Lisa Kay: Just the one scene and she was fabulous.

Lynne: She was wonderful I thought. She was a wonderful character study. Another person who I really enjoyed was Gerry Vans in his cameo role as the Arab. He didn’t have a lot of speaking parts, but his presence on stage, didn’t you think?

Lisa Kay: And I wish I remembered his lines because there were so many times in the show that the character would say the same line over and over again. It didn’t matter what the question was or what he was responding to. It was just that one line.

Lynne: Right. I thought he was very wonderful.

Lisa Kay: It was really pretty easy show to enjoy. There is a big variety of characters in the saloon. We never left the saloon. There were over 25 different actors that came on. Everyone from the policeman to the guy playing the piano and the kid playing pinball all night. Lots of little sub plots and lots of variety between dramatic moments and some really funny comic moments as well.

Lynne: I thought so, too. I said earlier about the set being so believable and just so realistic. In my opinion there was just one small distraction with the realism of the set and I know they were trying to keep the realism of being in a saloon. The pinball machine was a little bit distracting over the actors dialogue. That was just a tiny thing.

Lisa Kay: But it was a lot going on. I understand. That’s a hard balance to get that realism. Just like we’re both musicians so we were listening to the piano the whole time and every once in awhile I’d hear something and say, “Gosh, did he really want to use that chord?” And I’m like, “Ok, back to the show.” But for me it was the same distractions we’d probably have if we were in that saloon in 1939.

Lynne: Exactly. You know, I think it was a good show. It’s certainly suitable for most audiences. There was a lot of depth on stage and a lot of potential for depth on stage. Some of the little moments in the show were the best. We laughed considerably thinking about how much we wanted jelly beans after the show.

Lynne: We went out looking for jelly beans after the show.

Lisa Kay: So we certainly encourage you to figure out what the jelly bean appeal is if you get a chance to see The Time of Your Life.

Lynne: Yes, if you get the chance it’s The Providence Player’s and they’re in Fairfax, Virginia. If you want any additional information it is available on their website which is:

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works nationally and internationally as an opera singer, coach, teacher, conductor and stage director. She is the CEO of Saltnote Stageworks, a non-profit corporation that promotes education & performance opportunities for emerging artists.

One Response »

  1. We very much appreciate Lisa Kay and Lynne’s review and, indeed, each time reviews a Providence Players’ production. Lisa Kay and Lynne properly stayed away commenting on Mike Clark’s performance as Tom in the show (the conflict with showbizradio is obvious) so let me add that this first-time community theater actor is doing a terrific job in a challenging role. He is a natural in this part, was a very risky casting decision that has paid off in a positive way big time! I also want to let showbizradio patrons know that Laura Clark was a huge and invaluable part of this production. She is “off book” on so many of the smaller roles, often filling in for missing actors during rehearsal. She has been invaluable to us and welcome member to the Providence Players family.

    The Time of Your Life is the kind of production where the Players can shine….great set, lots to small gem roles that give a lot of people a chance to perform and a show that provides the opportunity to provide a complete theater expereince for our patrons.

    Lisa Kay and Lynne, The Arab’s line (as Laura will tell you) is “No Foundation. All the way down the line”. It is actually a 1930’s socialist/marxist reference that Saroyan weaved into the play. I suspect he may have been spoofing some of the “heavier” message plays of the time and tweaking the critics who found his stuff to sentimental. You can try and read a lot into this play but I truly beleive that it was written as a play to simply portray interesting people, dealing with some of life’s basic issues…what you see is what you get with Saroyan in this play.

    As for jelly beans, we made a mistake in not offering them at our concession table after the show. Thanks again for reviewing this production. Chip Gertzog, Providence Players