TIME STANDS STILL presented by Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati through April 1. You can read the show description here.
ETC’s 26th season continues to be my favorite to date with their current production of TIME STANDS STILL by Donald Marqulies. The contemporary script is solid. Several times, the playwright could have gone the obvious route, or ramped up the drama, just for the sake of drama. Instead we see four characters dealing with emotional situations honestly and like adults. Even at times when the conversation becomes heated, the characters stay on point instead of degenerating into finger-pointing and name-calling, which is a welcome change.
Much of the credit for the quality of the tone of the show goes to director Michael Haney, who guides his excellent four-person ensemble with a deft hand. All the characters are real people with real relationships to, and real affection for, each other. You easily believe there is a shared history among the older trio (Bruce Cromer* as Richard, Buz Davis* as James & Jen Johansen* as Sarah). Each character is an individual with their own unique strengths and flaws.
I was especially impressed with how the younger character of Mandy (played by Mallory Hawks*) was handled. I can imagine Mandy easily being portrayed as too naive or as a caricature, but she held her own when expressing her views without losing her more-positive outlook on the world. Also nice was that even though the show dealt with weightier topics, there is plenty of humor to offset it, without seeming forced or out of place.
Again Brian c Mehring (set and lighting design) and Shannon Rae Lutz (properties) nail the environment for this show; that of a small NYC studio apartment infrequently used by its owners.
I also thought Sarah’s injuries were well done. The wound make-up (designed and guidance by Kelly Yurkoby, executed by Reba Senske, Kelly Yurkoby, Sara Kenny & Rachel Berger) read well from my seat in the audience and the damage to her body was portrayed convincingly by the actress.
Overall solid work by everyone involved which makes for a very enjoyable night at the theater.
Click here for a complete list of show times, articles and other reviews for TIME STANDS STILL.
*Member of Actors’ Equity Association.
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