FRONT ROW CENTER
Review by Michael Warren
Looking forward to the season at Lakeside Little Theatre

     Another season is upon us, and there will be six productions (five plays and a musical) for our pleasure and amusement. Norm Foster, a prolific Canadian playwright, has evidently been discovered by LLT and the program includes two of his light comedies—Office Hours and Looking. Last year we had Sinners by the same author, so Foster replaces Neil Simon as Ajijic’s favorite writer. Looking will be the last play of the season while Office Hours is the first, running from September 27 until October 5.
     Then there is Agatha Christie with The Hollow—nice to have a murder mystery again! And at the beginning of December, an adaptation of Twelve Angry Men, a tense story set in a jury room. Many readers will remember the excellent 1957 movie starring Henry Fonda and directed by Sidney Lumet.
     In January, the fourth show will be a recent play called Incorruptible by Michael Hollinger. Set in a 13th century French monastery, it’s a mixture of comedy, history and morality, which poses important questions: Where do miracles come from? Does the end justify the means? Like last year’s Doubt, this play will make you think—hopefully some of us can still think!
     The musical is Kiss Me Kate, with music and lyrics by Cole Porter, on February 28 and run until March 10. Anya Flesh is no longer with us, so a new team is hitting the boards— Alexis Hoff as choreographer, and Betty Lloyd Robinson as director. Music will be directed by Richard and Eleanor Stromberg.
     By the time you read these lines, Office Hours will have just finished its run, and my review will appear next month. The play is a collection of six skits, though there are common elements, most notably a dead race horse and a romance novelist. Then The Hollow which opens on October 31 (no performance on November 1—because of the celebration of the Day of the Dead). It’s a classic English country house murder play, with plenty of guns (the English like shooting things) and plenty of suspects. Although he is not in the original stage version, Hercule Poirot, the renowned Belgian detective, will put in an appearance which should make the play more entertaining.
     So there you have it—two light comedies, a murder mystery, a tense jury room drama, a morality play, and a Cole Porter musical—it should be a good program. As many of my readers know, the road to the theater was torn up for repairs at the end of July and the planned series of Risky Readings had to be cancelled. Actually there was one reading— Pirandello’s Six Characters In Search Of An Author—which was very well performed.      It is a difficult and wordy play, and I thought the cast did a great job with it.
     Let’s hope that the road gets fixed in time for the season; however I understand that in any case the Risky Readings are unlikely to be rescheduled later on. So you may not get a chance to see a reading of Arthur Miller’s The Crucible and Joe Orton’s What The Butler Saw, while I will try to organizethe world premiere of my intriguing mystery, The Perfect Alibi.