Silver Spring Stage As Bees in Honey DrownBy Courtney Ferguson • May 18th, 2009 • Category: Reviews
Silver Spring Stage
Silver Spring Stage Theater, Silver Spring, MD
$18/$15 Seniors and Juniors (Friday and Saturday)
$15/$13 Seniors and Juniors (Sunday)
Playing through June 7th
Reviewed May 15th, 2009
Who wouldn’t be captivated by the life of Hollywood socialite Ms. Alexa Vere de Vere? The lifestyle, the clothes, the hair, the stories, the fame! The most captivated of all is a young writer named Evan Wyler. After the publication of his first novel, Evan gains a small piece of fame; small, but big enough to get noticed by Alexa. In awe of his success, Alexa demands that he write the screenplay to the story of her fabulous life. The opportunity is a dream come true! Evan begins to shadow Alexa’s life. He is now eating at the finest restaurants, wearing the nicest clothes, partying at exclusive clubs, and fame and fortune are in within his reach. To Evan life seems just too good to be true…and maybe it is.
As Bees in Honey Drown is classified as a comedy, but this performance seemed to lack the energy that makes comedy so engaging. It registered more as a drama that contained comedic elements. The story was interesting, but the pacing was so slow, it became hard to hold my attention. I enjoyed the performances, but the cast as a whole would benefit from a bit more liveliness. Despite the lack of energy, the show was very enjoyable.
Leading lady Lisa Anne Bailey gave the finest performance of the night as Alexa Vere de Vere. Her character made many transformations that she handled beautifully. Her accent was very well incorporated into her character, it was not too overbearing which made it believable. Michael Hammond gave a very natural performance as Evan Wyler. Evan is the kind of character that is too sweet for his own good, and is often time taken advantage of because of it. With a school boy innocence, Michael played Evan wide eyed and awe struck as he is thrust into a life of fame and prosperity. Joshua Redford played the quirky painter Mike Stabinsky. His performance, like Michael’s, was very natural.
Sara Joy Lebowitz, Vanessa Terzaghi, Dani Nolan, and Allison S. Galen were the four actresses who played the Muses. These four ladies had the demanding task of portraying multiple characters. They gave wonderful performances that were physically and vocally demanding. They made strong character choices that distinguished themselves from on character to the next. Their roles are very symbolic, revealing a deeper meaning to the play
All the technical aspects of the show worked together quite nicely. Sound effects, voiceovers, and lighting cues were dead on, assisting the performance perfectly. The seating arrangement in the Silver Spring Stage is unique, the audience is separated in two sides of the stage. The blocking was well thought out, and conducive to the theatre space.
For centuries muses have been a source of inspiration for artists, a driving force to creativity and unmistakable beauty. In Evan Wyler’s world they are the inspirations, the guides, and the creative force behind the story. Only through their constant influence and manipulation can Evan’s story progress.
The four muses in this production are based on Erato (Lyric Poetry), Euterpe (Music), Terpsichore (Dance), and Melpomene (Tragedy). Following in the neoclassical tradition, the muses are represented and distinguished through colors (green, yellow, blue, and purple) and various props. They are the forces that morph, shape, rebuild, and ultimately inspire the world of the play. They are as much our guides as Evan’s, and they are a constant presence and inspiration.
O Muses, O high genius, aid me now!
O memory that engraved the things I saw,
Here shall your worth be manifest to all! ~ Dante
- Alexa Vere de Vere: Lisa Anne Bailey
- Evan Wyler: Michael Hammond
- Mike Stabinsky: Joshua Redford
- Muse 1: Sara Joy Lebowitz
- Muse 2: Vanessa Terzaghi
- Muse 3: Dani Nolan
- Muse 4: Allison S. Galen
- Producer: Craig Pettinati
- Director: Craig Pettinati
- Assistant Director/Stage Manager: Rachel M. Loose
- Assistant Stage Managers/Running Crew: Donna Shute, Lenora Spahn
- Technical Director: Don Slater
- Set Designer: Matt Karner
- Master Carpenter: Joel Richon
- Set Painting: Brian Campbell, Rachel M. Loose, Kevin: Garrett, the Cast
- Costume Designer: Rachael Feola
- Lighting Designer: Andrew Scharwath
- Sound Designer: Kevin Garrett
- Combat Choreograhpy: Brian Dettling
- Properties: Brian Campbell
- Makeup and Hair: The Cast
- Sound and Lighting Operators: Kevin Garrett, John Slefinger
- Photographer: Allen Lebowitz
- Program: Leta Hall
- Program Cover Design: Kevin Garrett, Ryan Manning
- Subscription Brochure: Craig Allen Mummey
- Artistic Liaison: Andrea Spitz
- Hospitality Coordinator: Laurie T. Freed
This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/3817.
Courtney Ferguson is currently a student in the theatre arts program at Howard University pursuing a B.F.A in acting. Her plans are to go on to grad school to study Voice and Speech. Her credits include work on and off the stage, and she can be seen in the upcoming production of The Laramie Project with the Providence Players.