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Washington Street Players Dinner Theater entitled SHORT & SWEET

by Ceci LeBeau
November 23, 2017

On Dec. 1, 2, 8 and 9 the Washington Street Players will be offering a delightful evening of dinner theater entitled “Short and Sweet” at Anthony’s on the Green, 212 Prentice St., Holliston. Seven short plays comprise the evening. Directed by Karen Dinehart and Julie Murphy, and produced by Karen Dinehart, this is sure to be a winter treat.

On Dec. 1, 2, 8 and 9 the Washington Street Players will be offering a delightful evening of dinner theater entitled “Short and Sweet” at Anthony’s on the Green, 212 Prentice St., Holliston. Seven short plays comprise the evening. Directed by Karen Dinehart and Julie Murphy, and produced by Karen Dinehart, this is sure to be a winter treat.

Two Boston talents are the playwrights behind this event. Jack Neary is prolific writer, director and actor who has penned theatrical adaptions of literary classics such as The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, The Fall of the House of Usher, A Christmas Carol, Dracula and Frankenstein, numerous plays for young audiences and a long list of ten minute plays. I had the pleasure of seeing his play “Jerry Finnegan’s Sister” done by WSP eight years ago. He also appeared in Ben Affleck’s film “The Town” in 2011. He has been referred to as the Catholic Neil Simon. Rick Park, an alumni of Boston University, has been lauded for his entries in the Boston Theater Marathons held here in the city each spring.

The vignettes in this set are a celebration of all things Boston. Tough talking, blue collar Southie is on display in the raucous female “Life’s Half a Glass.” In “Five Nickels,” a shy 60 year old widower in charge of the pew rentals in his Catholic Church is nudged into asking an equally shy widow out for breakfast between masses. A 14 year old girl explores the world of a 12 year old boy over a fence in “Lilacs,” where she is bewildered to find out he’s not supposed to talk to her because she’s (gasp) a Protestant. Pictured right are Beth Ristaino and Bill Novakowski


Many of the short plays are peppered with references to a time gone by. The aforementioned girl wants to become a big actress like Elizabeth Taylor. Mood music is Frank Sinatra’s. Nostalgia is most affecting in the touching “Oklahoma!” in which Judy Davis plays a nurse thinking back on her days treating WWII boys in New York City, with Nate Callahan playing her priest with a spot-on Irish brogue.

Seniors who still have plenty of life kicking in them outfox their children in the humorous “Late Date,” where two thirty-somethings try without success to keep their elders from connecting on a date that mirrors their own disastrous one at Denny’s. In “The Wedding” an Archie Bunker-like father and Edith Bunker-like mother find their ideas on how to throw a wedding for their daughter at the Knights of Columbus hall is on a collision course with the bride who wants the band to be “Heavy Breathing.” The Boston accent gets a workout in “Space Savers,” in which two gruff older men tell dirty
jokes during a snow storm as they fend off hipsters who think they are going to get their hard earned parking spaces. Or, I should say, “pahkin” spaces. Pictured right is Judy Davis.

This grab bag of sketches has something for everyone. Catch it by arriving at 6:30 for dinner first at Anthony’s. Tickets can be found at WashStPlayers@gmail.com. or by calling 508-306-1442.

 

 

 

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