Today’s Drama Labs: A Preview

What do awkward pickup lines, Bourbon and hot make-out sessions have in common? No, they don’t all appear in my typical Saturday night, but you—potential Drama Lab patron—will certainly see all three in this week’s Drama Labs. Not intrigued yet? Keep reading. The first play on the chopping block, directed by Lucy Arnold ’10, is “You Can’t Trust the Male” by Randy Noojin. With veteran performers Kristina Rex ’11 and Eric Sirakian ’10 in her cast, Arnold was able to choose a much longer play, totaling 14 pages. The director was able to make this bold move with complete faith in her experienced troupe, including Katy Svec ’10, one of the most professional Drama Lab stage managers I’ve ever seen. The play focuses on a man and woman who meet before an Intro-to-French night class in New York City. Laura (Rex), a perky gal with the mouth of a truck driver, meets the bumbling, neurotic Harvey (Sirakian), whom she recognizes as her mailman midway through the play. Filled with surprising twists and turns, “You Can’t Trust the Male” utilizes diagonals in the small, often confining Theatre classroom. Arnold said, “I’m going to be very nervous, but I’m excited to see how [the actors] change their characters under pressure.” We all know the reason we really attend Drama Labs: to see our peers hook up on stage. Lucky for us, Mollie Lee ’10 chose to direct a deliciously raunchy play entitled “Compatible.” Grace Hoyt ’11 and Andrei Macovei ’09 play two young lovers hesitant about commitment and their strong feelings for one another. The first line uttered is “I love you” and the rest of the play ricochets off that sentiment. One highlight is Macovei’s native Moldovan accent, which I originally thought he was putting on for the character. His thick European accent combined with the underlying sexual tension of the play emits an authentic Soap Opera vibe from this piece. Lee clearly had a blast directing this play, and she got a lot of energy out of her actors in return for her dedication. In one critique, Lee told her actors, “It’s like you’re slow dancing with him, but middle-school style.” And that, ladies and gentlemen, is in reference to one of the tamer portions of the play. Concluding our trio is “The Wedding Story” directed by Mary Polk-Bauman ’11, who, interestingly, stumbled upon this hysterical play online. “The Wedding Story” is an ironic spin on a typical Disney fairy tale, depicting a storybook wedding. Andrew Schlager ’12 plays the exuberant Storyteller, intent on telling the audience a squeaky clean love story, while Kate Weiner ’11 and Kennedy Edmonds ’12 play the bride and groom, whose story is drastically different from the Storyteller’s idea of what happened. Schlager is in his element, toying with the audience and even adding some improvisational elements, which are sure to incite lots of laughs on Friday. Weiner also exudes a strong presence onstage, which works well with Schlager’s energy. Are you still not set on coming to the Drama Labs? Fine, don’t take my word for it, then. As Liza Minelli once said: put down the knitting, the book and the broom—and come to the theatre classroom. And who can say no to Liza Minelli? I know I can’t. See you on the stage.