Brigit, Odd Couple, From Shelterbelt With Love

* What sounds good when it feels like you’ve been pushing snow around every few hours? Sitting snug in an Irish pub with a bartender named Dev (Scott Kurz), sipping some stout and eavesdropping on Connor (Kevin Barratt) and Maeve (Laura Leininger) as they sort out life-changing decisions. It may not be snowing when Distant Music by James McLindon opens Thursday in Brigit Saint Brigit Theater’s Downtown Space, but their latest Irish play sounds like just the thing to heat heart and mind on a cold night. Will Maeve the nun risk her vocation by providing a forbidden sacrament? Will Connor agree to a judgeship? Will the bartender mind his own business? You’ve got the next few weekends to find out with the help of three top talents. * It was no surprise to see Anthony Clark-Kaczmarek steal the show when The Odd Couple returned to the Omaha Community Playhouse. And that’s no reflection on a solid supporting cast. I know his Felix Ungar is supposed to share the title billing with Oscar Madison, but the Neil Simon script gives a huge advantage to the finicky Felix who desperately faces the immediate crisis of being dumped by his wife. Edward Cutler, a less experienced actor than Clark-Kaczmarek, doesn’t sell “slob” as creatively as his co-star portrays Ungar’s neatnik peccadilloes, and he readily credits Clark-Kaczmarek with giving him the best acting lessons of his life. Director Judith K. Hart probably realized it wouldn’t succeed if he got into a scene-stealing contest with Clark-Kaczmarek. You may have seen the play before, but this Felix is a whole new experience, which runs through Feb. 13. * I’ve got to paste a reminder on my computer so I won’t forget it come next January. Every season I go somewhat begrudgingly to the latest From Shelterbelt with Love before the obvious dawns on me. I always enjoy most of these little playlets, and any clunkers pass quickly. With FSWL10, there were no real losers and some clear winners at 3225 California St., through Valentine’s Day. And it didn’t hurt that Bernie and Kay Clark paired in two of the nine, while Chelsea Long appeared three times. I finally figured out what fascinates me about Chelsea, other than her cutie-pie-ness. It’s the way she says, “Yep.” There’s less mystery about the appeal of the Clarks. They’re pros and we saw them serious in The Last Anniversary and silly as apes in Feeding Time at the Human House. Bernie tosses poop with the best of them. Cold Cream looks at theater in the metro area. Email information to coldcream@thereader.com.

posted at 07:59 pm
on Wednesday, January 26th, 2011

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