Friday, December 12, 2008


I read the script for Moving when it was first being considered by Stage Coach Theatre's script committee, and I still think it's a wonderfully clever, poignant and heartwarming story.

Sadly, the execution of the play is a little uneven. But props should be given to some fine performances. Ted Pendleton (I'm going to go with Pendleton -- the program has different last names for him on two different pages) turned in an incredibly funny and powerful performance as Fred Sapstead, the father of Barbara Hartman. Barbara is selling her home and plans to move Fred and her son Timmy with her so she can realize her dream of opening up a restaurant in another state. Her plan becomes flawed when her two daughters show up, hoping to move back home, and her estranged husband shows up, having decided he wants to be back in her life. Further complicating the issue is the fact that Fred also has his reasons for not wanting to move. Pendleton has the best role in the play and makes perfect use of it, combining wry wit and deep vulnerability.

Genny Ulmen played housekeeper Mildred Wright the night I saw the show. She did an excellent job capturing Mildred's mannerisms and portraying her as a warm, steady, maternal figure. What's even more impressive is that she did so well even though she was an understudy and had only one rehearsal with the cast.

Darrell Boatwright plays Joey Picardo, the son of moving man Harry Picardo. Joey wants to leave his father's moving business and become a ballet dancer, but doesn't yet have the heart to stand up and tell him. Boatwright plays Joey with wonderful enthusiasm as he jetés up the stairs to help his father with the furniture and pliés in the garden during breaks. He's got great moves!

Most of the other actors did all right, or had some good moments, but overall the show didn't feel like it quite gelled.

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