Sami Kolko

Sami Kolko

Sami KolkoSami KolkoSami Kolko

Actress I Producer 

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reel

$5 Shakespeare company

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*REVIEWS*

The play, under the direction of Joel Zwick (FB), moves briskly (90 minutes, no intermission), and the actor capture and are clearly having fun with their character types. I can’t necessarily say they are realistic portrayals, because I think the characters were written to exaggerate the behaviors. Stylistically, they capture well what I expect the backstage of an bare-bones theatre would be like — one shared dressing room for all, with threadbare decor and no privacy for changing except standing behind something. But I think Zwick also does a great job of turning what could be a bunch of stereotypes into a believable family that cares about each other — foibles and all.

Overall, I found the play entertaining and quite funny — and one that even made me laugh out loud (which is rare). The performances were strong, and the story was in essence a love letter to the people that do intimate theatre for rewards that are certainly not monetary, but are more spiritual. I think it is well worth seeing, especially if you (like me) are an audience member that loves the creativity that only small theatres can bring. My wife (who brought the show to my attention) found it rolling-on-the-floor funny. It really was a great show.

I’ve cited the performers before. I’d like to highlight a few that particularly caught my eye. The first was our understudy put-in, Sami Kolko Zwick (FB), who was a delight to watch as Spencer. Also fun to watch was the other young actress, Cindy Nguyen (FB). I really liked Adam J. Smith (FB)’s Jacob — you could just sense the exasperation. I thought Andy Robinson (FB)’s name was familiar, but I never even recognized Gareck in Chester, his portrayal of Chester was that strong. I also enjoyed the easy familiarity of Kenajuan Bentley (FB)’s Randall. But all of the actors were great.