Good People is centered around the tough and vulnerable Margaret (a strong performance by Virginia S. Burke) as she's fired for her job as cashier at a dollar store by Stevie (Sam Pearson, making the most of the small role). Margaret is a single mother of a developmentally disabled adult daughter and has never been able to climb out of the lower-class life into which she was born. With the help of her friends (scene stealers Jane Hammill and Angela Timberman) she decides to approach childhood friend Mike (James Denton, best known as another very different Mike on Desperate Housewives, making his welcome debut on the Minnesota stage). Unlike Margaret, Mike has gotten out of South Boston and is now a wealthy doctor with a young wife and daughter and a seemingly perfect life. He's unable to offer Margaret a job, but he does reluctantly invite her to his birthday party at his home in the nice part of town. Margaret shows up at his house and meets his wife Kate (an appropriately polished Hope Cervantes), where the pleasant reminiscing about the good old days turns ugly when they discuss why one of them was able to "get out of Southie" while the other wasn't. It's not just "hard work" as Mike says, but also good luck, family support, and gender privilege (sometimes it's easier for a man to leave his past behind than it is for a woman to leave hers behind). This second-act discussion is almost too intense; it feels like you're eavesdropping on a very personal argument.
|Jane Hammill, Angela Timbermann, Virginia Burke,|
and Sam Pearson play bingo (photo by Petronella Ytsma)
|things get heated (Hope Cervantes, Virginia Burke, |
and James Denton, photo by Petronella Ytsma)
A well-written and relevant new play, a great cast that plays well together, and excellent set design - another winner for Park Square Theater (playing now through October 6).
|I couldn't resist a photo op with Jamie!|
You can also catch him as host of the Ivey's pre-show party.