Based on the poetry of BARBARA DeCESARE
Conceived by DAVID WOLFSON and ARI LAURA KREITH
Part of the Midtown International Theatre Festival
The Workshop Mainstage, 312 W. 36 St., 4th Floor, NYC, July 21 through August 5, 2005
Directed by ARI LAURA KREITH
Music by DAVID WOLFSON
Musical Director/Piano DANIEL FEYER
Lighting Designer JERI SYKES
Stage Manager LAUREN WALSH
Publicity SCOTTI RHODES
Suzan Postel, Maree Johnson, Jennie Eisenhower
Amy Hutchins, Gayla D. Morgan
An evening of poetry set to song. It could work. It might work. It does work in the form of DREAMHOUSE. This was a welcome surprise, as there actually was a context and a construct to the piece. Described and offered up by director Ari Lauren Kreith as a song cycle, "a related group of songs, exploring a particular theme or related themes, tracing an emotional arc without relying on plot or narrative," the show delivers exactly what it promises.
The concept is rather simple. Five women sing the songs, poetry by Barbara DeCesare set to music by David Wolfson, of DREAMHOUSE. Along the way there is a lot of humor, all sorts of observations about life, love, sex and so on, and the kind of soft sadness that never dips into maudlin theatrics. There was a discernable shift in tone between acts with Act 1 being very funny and Act 2 a bit more earthly bound. Along the journey, Jennie Eisenhower stood out as the core comedienne, but all of these ladies can sing, and some of the ensemble work raised Goosebumps in a rather warm room.
DREAMHOUSE is heartily recommended as a new theatrical experience: the song cycle. With great source material in Ms. DeCesare’s witty words, and very pleasant piano to go with it, audiences are sure to experience an aural delight and laugh a lot too.
- Kessa De Santis -