Gulfshore Playhouse Has a Hit

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Gulfshore Playhouse Has A Hit

Alexis Hyatt and Kate Villanova in THE LIAR. Photo: Pedro Zepeda.
Alexis Hyatt and Kate Villanova in THE LIAR. Photo: Pedro Zepeda.

Take one of the wittiest, down right hilarious plays of The Season, mix it with a dazzling ensemble of eight Equity players, with brilliant directing by Cody Nickell, production values of the highest quality, and you get a genuine thrilling hit. Kudos to everyone at Gulfshore Playhouse. It’s well worth the drive down to Naples.

The play is “The Liar,” by the award winner, David Ives, and adapted from the comedy by Pierre Corneille. Oh, and comedy it is. How the heck Ives ever pulled it off, and in verse, too boot, has to be a sign of genius.

The plot is simple, but in no way predictable. It’s hard enough to know what’s a lie and what’s real. Dorante, (John Keabler) the lead, is an addicted “Liar.” His hired man, Cliton, (Scott Aiello) suffers from being unable to “Lie.” They come to Paris in 1643 to find Dorante a bride. Two beautiful women, entirely different, one as brash as the thorns on a rose, Clarice (Alexis Hyatt), and the other shy as a fluttering dove, Lucrece (Kate Villanova), quickly emerge as candidates, but with wild complications. And so we get swept up in the courtship dance laughing all the way through the marvelous Pentameters.

There’s no way, watching the “Liar” at work, that we aren’t, tenderly or ruthlessly, confronted by the lies we, each, have told, lies that had ramifications on other people caught in the web of our lies. But, what fun it is. The triumphs flop, the flops of near- triumphs take you rhyming through Act I as you meet all the characters, including Dorante’s darling Father (Dan Kremer) who only wants to be a Grand Father before he dies.

You almost have to go just to see what really professional actors can do with a really fine script. How was Dorante able to memorize all those lines. I think the rhymes may have helped, but it was truly an awesome performance. Congratulations John Keabler. Do, come back often to The Gulfshore Playhouse. And the rest of you as well. There’s not a lemon in the whole grove. I promise an un-sour evening for everyone in the audience. The loud standing ovation didn’t lie.

I anticipate full houses for “The Liar.” They deserve full houses for the gift they have brought to us. So, get your tickets fast. The play runs only until April 26th. Call the box office at: (866) 811-4111 or visit www.gulfshoreplayhouse.org

If you went to the play and didn’t like it, feel free to email me and tell me why. And if you cherished it like I did, I’d love that email, too. compdr1@juno.com

by Sidney B. Simon  THEATER NOTES