Posted on Jul 19, 2014
3 out of 5
Dangerous to Dance With by Bill Rogers, presented by Martin Tanner Productions
Some interesting characters, some good acting, and some terrific one-liners.
First, couple of housekeeping notes:
Take a wrap to Off-Center. It can get chilly if you are sitting in the draft.
This show runs about 80 minutes, not the 60 minutes listed in the Fringe book. I have since seen signs that A Hard Dayís Night and Gidionís Knot are also longer than 60 minutes.
If there are other shows that run longer than the time noted in the Fringe book, I suggest you send a notice to the KC Stage email.
Back to the show:
The one-liners steal the show. Playwright Bill Rogers crafted some excellent zingers and word puns, sometimes piling them on top of each other. Some very clever, creative language that was fun to be surprised by and then begin to anticipate. Always rewarding.
I think there is room to edit down the show, particularly to fit into a 60-minute time slot for Fringe. The opening exposition ran long for me, as did several spots throughout the show, and I never fully understood the story.
Victor Raider-Wexler stands out among the cast. He created a fascinating character, always consistent, truthful, and spot-on. Victor was adept at both comic timing and intense seriousness.
Diane Bulanís direction created good stage pictures and kept visual interest. The movements were natural and varied enough to give good audience coverage. RJ Parish provided just the right amount of set to allow the actors to live in the space. Sometimes the lighting made shadows on actorsí faces, which was distracting.
Coleman Crenshaw had the difficult job of drawing me in and keeping me tuned during the exposition at the beginning. His accent and business with the weights and maneuvering of the wheelchair helped with that. He was interesting to watch and listen to. Sometimes he changed his accent during the show, but his active listening and facial reactions were consistently good.
Jim Hopkins and Vincent Onofrio Monachino created fascinating characters with fun accents. Sometimes I thought they went a bit over-the-top and lost their honesty, but that may be because I didnít fully understand the story. Jim in particular did a good job with making me wonder if he was hiding another identity.
Kelsea Victoria McLean moved easily around the set, making me feel she was at home there. Sometimes her almost-constant smile bothered me, and there were several moments when I felt her lines were not coming from honesty within her. I particularly did not quite believe her panic at nowhere else to go nor her rather low-key reaction to the bullets. I think she could make a bigger difference between her Jill and Veronica characters. But she was pleasant to watch and listen to.