Provided by Fauquier Community Theatre (FCT)
The Fauquier Community Theatre (FCT) will present “Lost in Yonkers” for its fall show. This play was chosen to honor the recently-deceased king of snappy one-liners, Neil Simon. This story (a Pulitzer Prize and Tony award winner) is considered one of his best works, as it is a deeply moving play full of heart and emotion.
The director, Don Bachmann (from FCT’s Steel Magnolias & Greater Tuna), has struck a great balance between poignancy and humor in this great play about dysfunctional family dynamics. Bachmann also designed the intricate set depicting a historical traditional living room of the 1940s.
About the Play
The action is filtered through the eyes of two Bronx wise guys,15-year-old Jay (Cameron Dean) and his ginger-topped brother, Arty (Jake Miller), who is two years younger. In New York City in 1942, Jay and Arty are forced to live temporarily with their unwelcoming Grandma Kunitz (Catherine Stuart) while their now-widowed father Eddie (Jim Constable) is forced to take a job on the road to pay off his wife’s medical debt from a loan shark. A steely Jewish refugee from Germany, Grandma lives above her candy store in Yonkers, but there’s nothing sweet about her. Stuart plays the loathsome character very well.
Aunt Bella (Rebecca Heine), herself a little kooky, lives with and takes care of Grandma and is happy to have the boys move in. Eventually, shady Uncle Louie (Ricardo Padilla) arrives for a brief stay in order to evade some equally shady men who are looking for him, and the story truly begins to unfold. Rebecca Heine plays Bella with great care and tenderness. And though Grandma is mean and stubborn at the core, when we finally are able to investigate her history, the climax is a beautiful rendering of the difficult truths that lie at the core of both women. Dean and Miller (the two precocious teens) play off each other very well with their quick wit and sassiness. Gert (Dawn Gaynor), another adult sibling, is a complete Nervous Nellie around her mother (grandma). Gaynor shows great talent as she masters Gert’s quirks.
Kudos to costume designer Micki Lindquist on a change for every one of the scenes; the ensembles fit both the period and the characters very well.
FCT will present nine performances of Lost in Yonkers is 9 performances from Oct. 4- 20. Friday and Saturday performances are at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday matinees are at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $16 for students and seniors, and $18 for adults. More information and reserved seating for all of the performances is available online at FCTstage.org or by calling 540-349-8760.