There is lobster and then there is monk fish. What this has to do with Perfect Wedding written by Robin Hawdon that is currently running at Theatres at 45 Bleecker Street through August 2nd in conjunction with Vital Theatre Company is this – If you desire lobster and want to see a first rate farce “The Norman Conquests” should be your destination; if you desire monk fish (a poor man’s substitute for lobster) then you might be pleased by this mild mannered bedroom farce, wobbly directed by Teresa K. Pond.
Taking place is a nondescript hotel suite two hours before the impending nuptials of Bill and Rachael, Perfect Wedding has all the right doors to be slammed. All of the over-the-top characters thrust in a somewhat ridiculous situation, mistaken relationships and identities, some witty word play, slapstick and some fun moments but the plot is paper thin and as act two rolls around it becomes even thinner.
Suffice it to say that Bill (Matt Johnson – a fine actor in the wrong play who looks as though he is in a lost episode of Three’s Company, desperately wanting to be John Ritter and almost succeeding to the detriment of the character’s image) is to marry Rachael (Amber Bela Muse). The previous night, at a bachelor party, he somehow winds up in bed with another woman and a bump on his head after falling off a bar stool. His bride to be is to arrive momentarily. What to do? How to explain it all? There is the hotel housekeeper, his best friend Tom (a maniacal Fabio Pires), the bride’s mother (Ghana Liegh) and her off stage husband involved in the frantic and not very authentic events that follow.
Dayna Grayber (Julie the housekeeper) eats so many mints that you fear that her stomach will have to be pumped post performance. But she is very funny. Kristi McCarson (Judy) is Tom’s girlfriend and she has to be able to handle the farcical elements and at the same time be part of a serious love story which she does carry off expertly. Without her, I’m afraid the play would be at a loss.
Every time someone new enters the suite they all scream. There is a lot of screaming going on. But it is hardly uproarious. At the onset we hear Oh My God! uttered so often that one of the characters exclaims ” I wish you would stop saying that.” Eventually it stops only to be replaced by some more mundane dialogue. Go for the lobster.
www.vitaltheatre.org Tickets $25.00 212 579 0528