Last Of The Red Hot Lovers

By Marlene S. Gaylinn

It’s laughter all the way through Square One’s hilarious production of “Last of the Red Hot Lovers.” Tom Holehan, the company’s director makes sure of this as he takes every opportunity to display his knack for perfect timing – an element that is crucial in Neil Simon’s witty plays about human foibles. The performers vocally and physically dance around each other in perfect rhythm as if executing the choreography of a comic ballet. It follows through that each character -actor performs a multitude of amusing shticks, which engages the audience’s attention throughout the play. As for clarity, word emphasis, ethnic expression and body language, one can’t help wondering if the performers just walked in on a fresh breeze from a New York City street, or if that’s their normal, off-stage personalities.

Joan Meehan & Dan Arenovski

The play is about a nebbish husband, Barney Cashman (Dan Arenovski) who itches to experience an extra-marital relationship. Using his mother’s apartment while she’s away during certain afternoons, Barney tries his hand at seducing various women. A well-trained momma’s boy and obviously a non-drinker or smoker, it’s an uphill battle for him to take on an unfamiliar social role.

Like Goldilocks of the “The Three Bears,” Barney discovers that the first woman, “Elaine,” (Danielle Sultni) is too experienced at this sort of thing and that the wisecracking porridge she dishes out is just too hot for him. The second woman, “Bobby,” (Michelle Duncan) a ditzy, leftover from the hippie sixties, envelops him in a cloud of pot and before he even gets to first base, they both end up dazed on the hard floor. When “Jeanette” (Joan Meehan) arrives on the scene permanently attached to her pocketbook for security, Barney concludes that the bed he shares with his “wonderful wife” is the one that “…is just right.” How he finally comes to this realization is for you to find out.

“Last of the Red Hot Lovers” is a great choice to end Square One Theatre Company’s successful eighteenth season at the Stratford Theatre. The company resumes activities in November. New brochures plus discount subscriptions are available now.

“Last of the Red Hot Lovers runs until May 31.

Tickets: $18 & $17. Call: 203.735.8778.

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