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Signature Theatre Art

By • Apr 19th, 2011 • Category: Reviews
Art
Signature Theatre
Ark Theatre at Signature, Arlington, VA
Through May 22nd
90 minutes
Varies ($61-$71)
Reviewed April 10, 2011

Art comes to Signature. This play is about an expensive painting. The cost is a 15 year friendship. Written by Yasmina Reza this play shows us all how our friendships are always tested, how they have a life of their own and how they can take different paths based solely on a single fork in the road. A very enjoyable path is waiting for you here at Signature Theatre.

The cast is local, part of Signature’s goals of showcasing our local talent. This is a worthy goal and one which needs to be held closer to the heart of Signature. These three actors, Mitchell Hebert (Marc), John Lescault (Serge) and Michael Russotto (Yvan) are at the top of their game in this production. Each giving their all to their characters, but there was emptiness in the relationships. Except with Michael Russotto (Yvan) who tried to reach out to Marc and Serge, to connect on a deeper level of friendship, all we got was a fast paced pseudo intellectual tennis match of wit and blah.

The set, by James Kronzer was not without thought, but lacked an upscale income that Serge’s character would obviously have, especially having purchased an expensive painting. Kathleen Geldard’s costumes are very nicely conceived. Makes you wish Serge’s apartment was as nicely conceived. Yvan’s disheveled costume was perfect for him.

Now the good about Art is the pacing of this show. There are no words left to hang slowly and pointedly. The punch lines are delivered expertly, maybe too quickly, but that’s ok for this fast paced of a show. Too many productions of this play are drawn out and agonizingly slow. Matthew Gardiner made sure the pacing was crisp and paced at a high tempo. I just wish his characters could’ve shown more warmth for each other. When Marc reveals his true pain and anguish, he was placed up stage right and he was obscured in part. Pathos was lost along with his apparent friendship. OK, back to the acting. It’s wonderful to see true talent and skill in concert. The acting was a pleasure to watch and enjoy. For the acting alone, you will enjoy this production.

Photo Gallery

Three close friends John Lescault (left, as Serge), Michael Russotto (center, as Yvan) and Mitchell Hébert (as Marc) talk things over Michael Russotto (center, as Yvan) looks on as John Lescault (left, as Serge) and Mitchell Hébert (right, as Marc) go at it.
Three close friends John Lescault (left, as Serge), Michael Russotto (center, as Yvan) and Mitchell Hébert (as Marc) talk things over
Michael Russotto (center, as Yvan) looks on as John Lescault (left, as Serge) and Mitchell Hébert (right, as Marc) go at it.
John Lescault (as Serge) and Mitchell Hébert (as Marc) gaze at the white canvas John Lescault (as Serge) and Michael Russotto (as Yvan) share a laugh
John Lescault (as Serge) and Mitchell Hébert (as Marc) gaze at the white canvas
John Lescault (as Serge) and Michael Russotto (as Yvan) share a laugh

Photos by Scott Suchman.

Cast

  • Marc: Mitchell Hebert
  • Serge: John Lescault
  • Yvan: Michael Russotto

Crew

  • Scenic Design: James Kronzer
  • Costume Design: Kathleen Geldard
  • Lighting Design: Mark Links
  • Sound Design: Matt Rowe
  • Original Musical Works By: Peter Lerman
  • Production Stage Manager: Julie Meyer
  • Production Manager: Timothy H. O’Connell
  • Directed By: Matthew Gardiner

Disclaimer: Signature Theatre provided two complimentary media tickets to ShowBizRadio for this review.

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has been involved in theatre for over 40 years in the local Washington DC Metro area as well as NYC and London England. Mark has performed at the Dramatist Guild Theatre on Broadway, at The Dorothy Strelsin Theatre Off-Broadway. His credits include work in many local theatres as well: The Folger Theatre Group, Arena Stage, New Playwrights Theatre, 7th Street Players, The Keegan Theatre, The American Century Theatre, The Journeyman Theatre, ASTA Theatre, The Hayloft Dinner Theatre (Associate Producer), The Lazy Susan Theatre, Discovery Channels, “Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein” (Frankenstein) with Donald Sutherland. London, England credits include work at: The Duke of York Theatre, Roundhouse Theatre, The Questors Theatre, The British Embassy Players. Mark is a graduate of The Drama Studio, London, England. Mark is also a narrator of audio books for Gildan Audio: “True North”, by Bill George; “Never Give Up”, by Tedy Bruschi and “Five Minds for the Future”, by Howard Gardner among them. Mark currently teaches Advanced Acting at The Little Theatre of Alexandria and still performs locally in many theatres.

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