Neil Simon's play "Plaza Suite" might be nearly fifty years old, but the witty dialogue and thought-provoking vignettes are still relevant and entertaining today.
Just as New York's Plaza Hotel, the scene for this play, is known for its grandeur and luxury, so Cue Theatre can claim to be known for good quality entertainment, and this latest offering once again confirms that Cue Theatre is the home of some fantastic talent.
Directed by Heather Harrison, Cue Theatre's version of Plaza Suite is currently playing at the TET Cue Theatre in Inglewood and the opening night performance was well received by the large audience.
With the talent of Neil Simon behind the writing, it is no surprise the dialogue is witty and well-paced, however it is thanks to the skill of the director that this version also brings out the pathos, shining a light into the darker corners of various marriages and strained relationships.
The play consists of three very stories, with the only common thread being their location - Suite 719 at the Plaza Hotel and the team behind the set design did a fantastic job in creating a believable hotel suite layout to set the scene so nicely.
When it comes to the individual characters, all were well cast, and played their parts well. Gillian Sommers' portrayal of Karen, a suburban housewife hoping to rekindle the romance with her tired workaholic husband Sam (Morris West) was believable throughout, although it is testament to the talent of Morris that Sam captured the sympathy of the audience as much as his put-upon wife did. Morris played Sam as less of a cad, and more of a man who hasn't intended to end up where he is or to hurt his wife, and he brought an emotional maturity to the role which worked well.
The second act introduced the audience to a famous Hollywood producer (Jesse Kiplinger played by John Butler) who was meeting up with his high-school sweetheart Muriel, played by Victoria Mills.
John and Victoria were well cast for this, matching each other nicely in dialogue and timing and bringing real humour to their story. Just as Morris gave the character of Sam more depth than the dialogue alone did, so John gives Jesse a sly humour that has the audience in hysterics with his facial expressions as he slowly but surely seduces Muriel.
In turn, Victoria captures Muriel's conflict beautifully, as she skips between insisting she must leave to pouring herself yet another drink and staying.
The final scene is widely accepted as being the funniest in the play, and Glenys Horsfall and Kevin Koch certainly had the audience in hysterics throughout.
Glenys is perhaps a stand-out star of the show, with her perfect comedic timing combining with absolutely fantastic acting throughout her scene. Her use of melodrama and hysterics is entertaining, but when combined with Kevin's portrayal of the father of the bride who is losing his temper it becomes truly magnificent to watch.
Plaza Suite is running at the TET Cue Theatre until November 11, and is well worth watching.
Go ahead, make a reservation and enjoy a night at the Plaza Suite.