Theater Info for the Washington DC region

Chevy Chase Players The Memory of Water

By • Dec 11th, 2007 • Category: Reviews

Listen to our review of Chevy Chase Players’ production of The Memory of Water [MP3 5:13 2.4MB].

The Memory of Water
Chevy Chase Players
Chevy Chase Community Center, Washington DC
$15/Adults; $13/Seniors/Students
Through Dec. 15

Laura: This is the review of The Memory of Water performed by the Chevy Chase Players at the Chevy Chase Community Center in Washington DC. Mike and I saw the performance on Saturday December 8, 2007.

Mike: This is a tradegy/comedy which seems kind of funny, but there were some serious parts of the show as well as some funny family bits. It was kind of searching for what it wanted to be, but it was pretty life like.

Laura: Yes, this show was pretty deep. It touched on an uncomfortable issue, that of dealing with death and grief and coming to terms with them. This is not a play for children, there was a lot of adult language and adult situations. I would recommend it for upper high school age and above. This was a very well acted play. It brought out a lot of good emotions in all of the players.

Mike: The Memory of Water is a play by Shelagh Stephenson. It takes place after Vi has passed away and her three adult daughters come back to the house they grew up in for the funeral and to dispose of their mother’s belongings. Each of the daughters has her own issues. They all remember differently how they grew up as well as how each other grew up. There is a lot of conflict that comes to a head during the evening. Some of the memories get shared that had been secrets and some secrets get shared that should have remained a secret.

Laura: Mary was the middle sister. She was played by Natalie McManus. She had probably had the widest range of emotions throughout this show. I enjoyed watching her go from having hope to despair to a lot of anger. I liked her scenes dealing with her sisters. She was in a way the glue that held the sisters together.

Mike: She was also the only sister that could see their mother. Vi was played by Mary Anne Peterson. She appeared on stage a few times and Mary would have conversations with her. Sometimes the conversations were accusatory and sometimes they were touching.

Teresa was the oldest daughter. She was played by Lennie Magida. She was very good. She had an extended drunk scene in which a lot of information was thrown out that really shouldn’t have been shared. People tend to share a lot of information when they are drunk. It was like watching a train wreck. The husband and the other sisters were beside themselves trying to keep her under control.

Laura: I liked Teresa because I could identify with her. I am the oldest sibling of the family and felt like the one who had to fix everything. Teresa was the one who came over and stayed with her mother and took care of her until her death. I liked and respected her.

The youngest sister was Catherine played by Lisa Adams. She was definitely the baby of the family. Life revolved around her. Her scenes with her sisters were good in that she talked about how she always felt left out of things and not included. The two older sisters felt Catherine got to do the fun things. It was a very interesting dynamic.

Mike: Mary’s boyfriend Mike was played by Paul Marshall. He was married, just not to Mary. It was a common secret that everybody seemed to know about, but didn’t have a problem with. He seemed able to justify everything he was doing and did not appear worried how it was going to affect other people.

Theresa’s husband Frank was palyed by Bernie Kellett. He was kind of wishy washy. He regretted being in the marriage and some of the scenes shared how they got together. There were some strong emotions that really could have exploded, but were delayed until later. It would have been interesting to see what happened the day after the funeral. Some of these characters had some good openings presented that would make a good opening for a follow up play.

Laura: The entire show took place in Vi’s bedroom. The set was nicely done and not crowded. There was a lot of room to move around. The Set Designer was Neil Edgell.

The Memory of Water is playing for one more weekend, Friday the 14th at 8 and Saturday the 15th at 7:30 at the Chevy Chase Community Center in Washington DC. I recommend you go see this show. It is deep, but I think you will appreciate it and it was very well acted.

Mike: And now, on with the show.


  • Vi: Mary Anne Peterson
  • Mary: Natalie McManus
  • Teresa: Lennie Magida
  • Catherine: Lisa Adams
  • Mike: Paul Marshall
  • Frank: Bernie Kellett


  • Producer: Neil Edgell
  • Director: James Robertson
  • Assistant Director: Mary Anne Peterson
  • Set Designer: Neil Edgell
  • Lighting Designer: Jim Robertson
  • Sound Designer: Neil Edgell
  • Set Construction Chief: John Vandergriff
  • Set Construction Crew: John Vandergriff, Jim Robertson, Neil Edgell
  • Stage Manager: Kim Randolph
  • Costumes: Rosie Hilmer-Heartte
  • Hair/Makeup: The Cast
  • Properties/Set Dressing: Julie Richer
  • Backstage/Moving Crew: Julie Richer, Mark Richer, Rosie Hilmer-Heartte, Claire Peterson
  • Graphic Design: Andrew Peterson
  • Sound Operations: Unka Noni
  • Light Operations: Kim Randolph
  • Program: Neil Edgell
  • Photography/Website Manager: Neil Edgell
  • Box Office/Hospitality: Helen Templin, Mike Binder, Claire Peterson, Stephen Peterson, Andrew Peterson, John Vandergriff, Judith Vandergriff, Brenda Shaw, Claudia Boccock, Marjorie Townsend, Marie Shirey, Day Walters, Lelia Moors, Mary Ann Robertson, Marck Richer, Larry Berenson, Barbara Luchs
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