Chapatti – Review by Nancy Sasso Janis

Al Kulcsar, left, and Lucy Babbitt in theSquare One Theatre Company production of Christian OíReillyís play ‘Chapatti.’ WESTPORT COMMUNITY THEATRE
Westport Community Theatre closes its 2024 season with a Square One Theatre Company production of the Christian O’Reilly’s play “Chapatti.”

Tom Holehan of Square One Theatre directed the lovely work, with Ruth Anne Baumgartner, Westport Community Theatre’s Executive Producer serving as the show’s producer.

The play’s licensing company sets the scene in Dublin, Ireland in the present time. “Romance is a distant memory for two lonely (middle-aged) animal-lovers…When forlorn Dan and his dog Chapatti cross paths with the amiable (widow) Betty and her nineteen cats, an unexpected spark begins a warm and gentle story about two people re-discovering the importance of human companionship.” The dog is named for Dan’s favorite Indian dish.

The playwright is a Galway-based writer. “Chapatti” was presented in 2014 at Ireland’s Galway Arts Festival and then by Chicago’s Northlight Theatre.

Holehan, a co-founder of the Connecticut Critics Circle, previously directed “Three Viewings” for this Westport theater and has directed over 100 productions at Square One. He has reimagined this Irish comedy for this theater.

The two seasoned actors bring this well-written story to life so well that we hang on their every word, all well-delivered with a light Irish brogue. We can often laugh at their gentle comedic interactions and appreciate how the two human shadows save each other.

The extremely talented Al Kulcsar embodies the role of Dan.

Lucy Babbitt of Stratford gives a masterful performance in the wonderful role of Betty.

The set that was designed by Kulcsar simply sets the scene of the lodgings of the two distinct characters. Baumgartner described it as “semi-abstract” in her curtain speech and encouraged the patrons that had come out during a raging thunderstorm to use their imaginations as the actors mime interacting with their pets.

Lighting designed by Jeff Klein contributes to the movement between the scenes.

Sound design by David Rylander works efficiently.

“Chapatti” continues at the performing space of Westport Community Theatre, 10 Myrtle Ave., Westport though June 23. Park behind the yellow Town Hall building and enter through a door on the lower level at the back of the building.

For tickets, contact the box office at 203-226-1983 or visit