A mother and her two adult children live in a small apartment in St. Louis in the late 1930s. Tom dutifully supports the family by working at a shoe factory, where he feels stifled and bored with life. Laura has a slight physical impairment that has caused her to become reclusive, wanting nothing more than to stay in the apartment, listen to records on the Victrola, and arrange her glass figurines, her menagerie. Their mother, Amanda, is constantly nagging her children - telling Tom how to chew his food and how to sit at the table, cajoling Laura into leaving the house to attend business school or entertain a "gentleman caller." She's a stereotypical fading Southern belle, who talks constantly of her glorious past and happy youth; she performs a memory play of her own for her children. She wants Laura to be as popular as she was, but Laura is nothing like her, and the time and place they live in is nothing like the one in which she came of age. The situation turns tragic as the gentleman caller experiment fails miserably, Tom leaves the family to find his fortune in the world, and Laura is left with her glass menagerie.
|Tom (Jason Peterson) and his mother (Katherine Ferrand);
the looks say it all
|Laura (Carolyn Trapskin)
and her gentleman caller (Josef Buchel)
Yellow Tree Theatre has recently announced their new season and it looks like another great one. I'm most excited to see Circle Mirror Transformation, a great character piece I saw at the Guthrie studio a few years ago which should be a great fit for Yellow Tree - intimate, funny, poignant, and full of awkward pauses and weird acting class exercises. And of course, nothing piques my interest like the words "new original musical," especially when the authors are one of my favorite local musicians, Blake Thomas, along with great Yellow Tree actors Mary Fox and Andy Frye. So if you missed out on this production (only two more performances, sorry for the late review), you have some great choices next season to visit Yellow Tree Theatre in charming Osseo, where good stories live.