Saturday, November 14, 2015

Wax Wing Productions Presents "The Man From Willow's Brook" by Kordis - Where Will You Spend Eternity?



Wax Wings Productions is presenting an original play by local playwright Kevin Kordis.  "The Man From Willow's Brook" is a very interesting twist on the Cain and Abel story, with a bit of reincarnation vibe thrown in.  Think of "East of Eden" meets "Groundhog Day."  A Stranger (Matt Corr) wakes up near a brook, sees himself reflected in the water, and tries to remember or figure out who he is. He meets a Homeless Man (Ben Lewin) who philosophizes with him, and directs him to the only restaurant in the little town.  He has no money, but kind-hearted Eva (April Singly) offers to let him have their famous steak and eggs on the house, until her husband takes umbrage at her overly generous act.  The husband is named Apple (Evin Charles Anderson).  Are you seeing some Edenic allusions here?  The Stranger encounters a man who calls himself Honest Abe (Chris Chiampa), and Abe warns him to leave town before his presence results in tragedy.  They have a history, but that history is not revealed until later in the play.  Detective Sol (Casey Preston) is also present in the restaurant and makes note of the mysterious stranger in town. Tragic events do indeed transpire, reflecting the Curse of Cain. I will not spoil the intrigue by revealing too many details.

I enjoyed the play, which gave me much food for thought.  I consider it to be an unfinished work.  It could use some judicious cutting.  There are two police officers (Sarah Brinks and Holly Schaff) who seem superfluous to the main story. There is a scene in which these two talk about nonsense that has nothing to do with the main plot or main themes of the play.  That scene needs to be cut.  In addition, these two female actors are portraying male cops by wearing baggy uniforms and cheap dollar store paste-on mustaches that drag the otherwise fine production values down to a level that is unnecessarily tawdry.  These are minor flaws that can easily be fixed, and the play will be even more worthy of attention and a long life than it already is. Mr. Corr, Ms. Singly and Mr. Lewin in particular stand out in their roles.

Ben Lewin As Homeless Man
"The Man From Willow's Brook"
by Kevin Kordis
Wax Wings Production
Boston Playwrights' Theater
Through November 21st
Photo by WaverlyKnobs.com


The play is directed by Jesse Strachman.  Lighting design is by PJ Strachman.  A highlight of the production is the series of storyboards that are projected on either side of the stage.  These have been rendered beautifully by set designer Allison Choat, with final images rendered by Kristen Boucher Anderson.

"The Man Form Willow's Brook" runs through November 21st at Boston Playwrights' Theater.

Wax Wings Productions Website

Enjoy!

Al


7 comments:

Kevin Kordis said...

Just a small correction for Credit: Allison Choat, our wonderful set designer, did storyboard the play, but the final images that were projected throughout the show were realized and rendered by the equally talented Kristen Boucher Anderson.

Anonymous said...

The photo credit is WaverleyKnobs.com. Thank you!

Unknown said...

I saw this and had to leave at intermission. Never have I been more bored. Tone issues, cliches, and bad acting were all present. Maybe it got better at act two, but nothing could save the disaster that is that first act. And those "beautiful panels" were so off tone and weird. They also just weren't beautiful. The only actor I somewhat enjoyed was the abusive shop owner. Also... What were those accents? Choose a time period. Some characters seemed Shakespearean, some southern, and some actors just kept on changing. It was a mess. Don't waste your ten dollars on this... Crap

Unknown said...

I saw this and had to leave at intermission. Never have I been more bored. Tone issues, cliches, and bad acting were all present. Maybe it got better at act two, but nothing could save the disaster that is that first act. And those "beautiful panels" were so off tone and weird. They also just weren't beautiful. The only actor I somewhat enjoyed was the abusive shop owner. Also... What were those accents? Choose a time period. Some characters seemed Shakespearean, some southern, and some actors just kept on changing. It was a mess. Don't waste your ten dollars on this... Crap

Harris Cohen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I thoroughly enjoyed this work! To "unknown," who left without seeing the end, you missed out. everything comes together t the final moment. the panels were "weird" because the whole play is weird, in a good way! The time period is not important. I like that i was kept guessing bout where this place may be and what time it was taking place. The main character has no idea where or when he is. Again if "unknown" had stayed until the end he may have understood that the ambiguity is fitting. Loved the show!

Anonymous said...

Concept doesn't make up for the out of place acting. Everything was awkward. What was with that crazy church music in the beginning of the show? I am sorry about leaving at intermission but me and my sister couldn't take it and I was only in Boston for a limited time. I'm in theater and I wanted to enjoy some Bostonian theater, but I got weird, uncomfortable, awkward all in one show.