Wednesday, July 9, 2014





Comedy gets physical


February 17. 2013 9:38AM


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She's wearing a hoop skirt and flowing wig, he a ruffed collar and enormous fake nose. Both Charlotte and George have swords they're not afraid to use in a dramatic, climbing-over-the-furniture, mock duel.


"That's their daily warm-up. It's how they have fun together," said Daniel Roth, who plays George in the Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble's production of "Moon over Buffalo."


So George and Charlotte, leaders of a struggling repertory theater, are just having fun as they prepare for "Cyrano de Bergerac," a play they're presenting along with Noel Coward's "Private Lives."


Poor Howard doesn't know that. He's their daughter Rosalind's fiancé, came over to meet her folks, and ends up cowering on the floor with his jacket over his head.


Does he really want to join this family? After all, as a group they've inspired stage manager Charlotte's own hard-of-hearing mother, Ethel, to declare, "It's like living in an asylum on the guard's day off."


Ethel has a point, with which audiences will surely agree when they watch George get drunk and try to sober up on Irish coffee. Or when they see Charlotte fawn over Howard, whom she believes is Frank Capra. Or when they watch another wannabe son-in-law, Paul, vigorously help George put on his pants.


"It's a hoot and so physical, with so much going on. I love the whole piece," said Roth, who admits it can be "pretty darned tiring."


The show – by Ken Ludwig, whose "Leading Ladies" was a big success for BTE – has lots of pure farce, but there is a serious moment, when George reminds Charlotte why they love their crazy business.


"You're an actress, Charlotte," he tells her. "It's in your veins. If you were caught in the spotlight of a runaway train, you'd break into a time step. It's a gift to be that reckless and insane. There are people out there in the darkness who are living through you, dreaming of what they can be through your voice."


The play opened last week, and, Roth said, "It's very moving for me to say that every night. It's really lovely to catch those reverberations every night."


Just as George and Charlotte have been together for 35 years, he noted, this is BTE's 35th season.


IF YOU GO


What: ‘Moon over Buffalo'



Who: Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble



Where: Alvina Krause Theatre, 221 Center St., Bloomsburg



When: 7:30 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays and 3 p.m. Sundays through Oct. 21



Tickets: 784-8181





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