Theater Review: 'Perfect Wedding'

 

Theater Review: 'Perfect Wedding'

 

Date: August 29, 2012
by: Paula Atwell | Theater Critic

 
 

 

This weekend is your last chance to catch “Perfect Wedding” at Florida Studio Theatre. The show looks spectacular in the newly remodeled Gompertz Theatre setting. Michael Lasswell’s stunning scenic design displays two adjoining rooms within a hotel room, where all the madcap action takes place. Director Bruce Jordan must have been shooting off sparks during the rehearsals, because the pacing is electrifying, and the actors spew verbal fireworks in rapid succession, with British accents, no less.

The play, written by Robin Hawdon, makes me think of a cross between Doris Day and Rock Hudson doing the romantic comedy version of Abbott and Costello’s “Who’s on First?” and “The Importance of Being Ernest,” Oscar Wilde’s brilliant farce. The dialogue is cunningly intricate, yet extremely witty and easy to follow. Hawdon is perhaps better known for “Don’t Dress for Dinner,” which was England’s longest-running comedy, and produced by FST in 1998.

The story, which may qualify as every male’s quintessential sweaty nightmare, begins when the bridegroom, Bill, played with great charm and frenzied earnestness by Graham Stuart Allen, wakes up naked with a hangover beside a woman he doesn’t remember.

His best man, Tom, soon is reluctantly recruited into aiding and abetting a subsequent cover-up. Daryl Embry plays Tom with an edge of naivety and enthusiasm, including some physical comedy, such as when he tosses his tuxedo tails over his shoulder, shouting, “I’ll kill him.” He also wields a mean toilet brush, a prop featured prominently throughout the hi-jinks.

Four talented females act as counterfoils in this folie à deux. Kate Siepert shines as the chambermaid, who becomes an integral part of the mayhem and brandishes a believable police whistle. Lisa McMillan is perfection in her feathered Big Bird portrayal of a high-pitched and demanding mother of the bride. Faith Sandburg plays the unsuspecting bride and Jenny Strassburg the other woman, both beautiful and believable.

Sarah Bertolozzi provides delightful costumes, and Jeffrey Cady provides the lighting.

 

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