Reviewed by Ralph Hall
The “watchers” battle the “doers” in Half-Light Theatre’s production of Neil Simon’s Barefoot in the Park, which opened last night (March 23) in the newly renovated ballroom of the Roberson Mansion in Binghamton. Director Tim Mollen established a pace and beat that nourished the humor and accented the dramatic, giving the full-house audience an excellent interpretation of this 1960s comedy.
Zachary Chastain (as a young newly-wed lawyer) and Kate Murray (as the mother of the new bride) interpreted their characters with a strength, consistency, humor and energy that made this production the success that it is. Both actors have been seen and enjoyed often on local stages; however, they both stepped up to new levels of artistic performance in Barefoot in the Park.
Chastain’s character maintains a constant rock of stability with a new wife, job and apartment until the pressure builds and the volcano erupts. Whether in the controlled stable state or lost in the eruption of frustration, Chastain’s performance was outstanding.
When the mother lets down her hair, it is the watcher becoming the doer. The shifting and altering of circumstances and timing demand an equal change in intensity and motivation. Murray very successfully rose to this demand. (Shown from left in the photo: Chastain, Wade, Murray and Yajko.) Read the rest of this entry »