Monday, April 26, 2010

POW! (Play Of The Week)

Penetration Play
by Winter Miller

It’s the last weekend of summer and Ash brings her best friend, Rain, home to her parents’ house on the Jersey Shore. Their relationship is filled with the biting remarks you only reserve for your closest friends. Or maybe the people you’re secretly in love with.

The play opens after the two women have gone for a run with Ash’s new beau, Rich. They dated back in high school, but have recently rekindled their relationship and Ash wants Rain’s approval. But Rain is a tough critic and Ash seems to be changing for Rich a little quicker than Rain would like. As their conversations turn more and more into sparring matches, it becomes clear that Rain is only barely hiding her love for Ash, and Ash is either oblivious or deftly avoiding the issue.

The next scene is later that night, after dinner, Rain returns to the house, leaving Rich and Ash behind. Maggie, Ash’s mother is up reading. And while she complains about her husband and plays the good housewife with wine and cheese for Rain, they connect over their inability to get what they want from Ash. After a bottle of wine (over a very short period of time), Rain starts doling out compliments and then begins to seduce Maggie. At first, Maggie resists, but Rain doesn’t give up so easily.

Ash returns later to see her mother and Rain asleep on the couch and while Maggie escapes upstairs, Rain and Ash have more to hash out. And in the morning, everything has changed, for better or worse.

The Penetration Play deftly explores 21st century life between close female friends and their lonely mothers with great humor and economy. I read this play because a customer had requested to put it on hold and when I started reading it, I could barely put it down. Miller’s dialogue leaps off the page and her characters’ wit and bile make for a very entertaining piece that really deals with relationships and narcissism and the complications of living in a world of subtext.

Cast: 3W (2 in their mid-late 20s, 1 in her mid-50s)

Scenes and Monologues: Great scenes for two women in their mid-late 20s and also for one woman in her mid twenties and one in her mid-50s. A couple monologues for a woman in her 20s and for a woman in her mid-50s.

Reviewed by Kate

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