Bee Trapped Inside the Window – Review by Bonnie Goldberg

Have you ever felt trapped? Maybe, not as frightening as being trapped in an elevator, or a cave, or a burning building? But, nonetheless, trapped in a situation, a lie, a need to find out who you are when all you have are question marks? These intriguing thoughts are raised by playwright Saviana Stanescu in her world premiere play “Bee Trapped Inside the Window” being produced under the direction of Vernice P. Miller at HartBeat Ensemble in Hartford until Sunday, May 8.

The play surrounds the lives of a trio of women, the youngest being only twelve, an inquisitive Erin Lockett as Mia, who doesn’t understand her family and her heritage. Apparently her single mom Sasha, a controlling Jennifer Dorr White, was born in Russia and spent time in Africa where her black daughter Mia was conceived, and is now a wealthy and powerful business executive, but Mia is plagued with doubts. Who is her father? Why won’t her mom share any of her heritage with her? Why is it so hard to communicate with her?

To add a little more mystery to their situation, they live next door to a family who employs a sweet, hard working domestic May, a dedicated worker Mami Kumari, who spends her days and nights keeping the family well fed, their sinks clean and the pet pooch exercised. Where did May come from? Her origin and story consume the journalistic nature of school girl Mia and engage her curiosity. Mia is now determined to discover the histories of all three, and most of all herself. She even composes stories about her mother’s problem with alcohol and investigates May’s situation, focusing attention on the domestic abuse she suffers from her family who never give her a day off from working nor pay her a penny over her decades of servitude.

Like a bee trapped inside a window, these women are seeking a way out. Will salvation and redemption bring them the freedoms and the answers they seek or will they suffer more for having their personal window yanked open? This thought provoking play will make you debate the merits of disturbing the status quo and trying to make the situation better. HartBeat Ensemble’s mission is “To create provocative theater that connects our community beyond traditional barriers of race, gender, class and geography.”

For tickets ($25, students and seniors $20), call HartBeat Ensemble, at Carriage House Theater, 360 Farmington Avenue, Hartford, at 860-548-9144 or online at Performances are Friday at 7:30 p.m., Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. Proof of vaccination and marks are required. A special dialogue will take place on Saturday, May 7 at 10 a.m. to noon. Visit to register.

Come join Mia, Sasha and May as they struggle to gain their identities and discover their rightful place in our society.