Theatre on the Square; Betty Rage Productions; through June 12.
- Betty Rage Productions debut performance of "Five Women Wearing the Same Dress" runs through June 12.
In Betty Rage Productions' inaugural performance, five bridesmaids revolve around an upstairs bedroom at a family wedding, each with various reasons for hiding from the party. Playwright Alan Ball's (Six Feet Under, True Blood) script is overloaded, taking on more ground than it can realistically cover. He packs too many topics (marriage, divorce, adultery, lust, sexual abuse, AIDS, gay issues, family dysfunction and others) into a series of disconnected scenes. On top of that, little to no action occurs on stage; most characters experience mainly internal conflict or conflict with unseen wedding guests.
While the play is a poor choice for a theatrical debut, the cast creates lovable and relatable characters. Karen Irwin's direction creates a delightful slumber party atmosphere, revealing a rare glimpse into the private interactions between women, which are at times beautiful and at time vicious.
Ultimately, Five Women left me wanting to see more from Betty Rage. Here's hoping they can bloom more fully into their mission to provide more opportunities for "chicks" to produce "cutting edge theater."