Neil Simon’s “Brighton Beach Memoirs” at Seven Angels through October 19

By Tom Nissley

A beautiful production of “Brighton Beach Memoirs,” directed by Semina De Laurentis, is playing at the Seven Angels Theatre in Waterbury. I loved seeing it. A great set (Daniel Husvar) contains the combined families of Kate (Sarah Knapp) and her sister Blanche (Elizabeth Donnelly), whose husband died. Kate’s husband Jack (Michael Iannuci) is the father figure for his own two sons, Stanley (Robert Mueller), and Eugene (Carey Cannata) and Blanche’ daughters, Nora ( Devine)¬†and Laurie (Hanna Hartmann).

This fabulous cast is so well chosen and so carefully directed that they could stand together for a best ensemble award. Together they survive the family pressures and cares and heartaches of a Jewish family in Brooklyn just before the breakout of World War II. The narrator is young Eugene, probably meant to be Simon, and his notes to self and comments on growing up are humorous and ironic.

Costumes (Vivianna Lamb), Lighting (Scott Andrew Cally), and Sound Design (Matt Martin) add in perfectly. This easy-to-like play is a best-in-region for simple enjoyment and superb acting.

Tickets and information at or call 203-757-4676.

Tom Nissley for the Ridgelea Reports on Theatre
October 5, 2014

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