Bob and I were eager to interview David Bonanno because we had been impressed by his performance last year as Vanya in Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike as well by his work in a reading at Weston Playhouse this winter. This year besides reprising his role as Ian in The Other Place which he had performed with Susan Haefner in Shaker Bridge, New Hampshire, he was directing one of Weston’s wonderful cabarets with The Young Company. Sometime after we interviewed David, we saw the cabaret and enjoyed it immensely.
We had seen The Other Place last year at another theatre in a gripping performance. This is a special play dealing with many issues. When Bob writes a fan letter to a playwright, you know it is a good play because as a playwright himself, he is very demanding about the quality of plays. It is not unusual for him to observe that the production was wonderful, the acting excellent, but the play wasn’t very good.
We saw the play with David and Susan Haefner and it was a deeply moving experience. Seeing a play a second time with a different cast bringing their insights and qualities as actors is always worthwhile, but this was more than that. The play is at the Rod and Gun Club at the Weston Playhouse Theatre Company until August 9 and it should not be missed. As audience you are completely involved in the lives of these characters who are made so real by these actors you know them and feel for them fully. Tim Fort directed the play with sensitivity and understanding. That he did this the same season he directed Pump Boys and Dinettes indicates his versatility.
On the way home as we reflected on the performances, Bob noted David’s intensity and lightness and Susan’s strength and vulnerability coming through clearly. The two supporting actors playing a variety of roles were also vividly real. This is why we go to theatre. Bob got home and wrote Sharr White another fan letter, praising this production.