Archive for February, 2010

February 13, 2010

Bonkers for Yonkers

I was very excited to see The Old Globe’s production of Lost in Yonkers last week. I didn’t know too much about it except that it was by Neil Simon, so I knew it would be funny, but the main reason I was excited was because it was the inaugural show in the brand new Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre, the Globe’s new theatre-in-the-round.

Unfortunately, the theatre was a bit of a disappointment. I do love to see shows in such a small, intimate setting. It really helps suck you into the world of the play. But the leg room! Now, I’m not a tall person (5’4″ if I really stretch my neck), but the seating is very cramped. I know Harvey White is a very tall man. I used to see him in the halls of Qualcomm when I worked there. I don’t know how his 6-foot-plus frame folds into these very shallow rows. Frankly, I’m surprised that after the millions of dollars spent on this gorgeous new theatre that more consideration wasn’t given to the lack of leg room.

The play, however, was wonderful. Very funny, yes, but also very touching. I cried, which isn’t particularly noteworthy to anyone who knows me, but I heard my husband sniffling as well. The relationship between the over-bearing mother and developmentally disabled daughter was especially moving to me, as I have a younger sister with severe retardation.

The scene stealer was Jeffrey M. Bender as the shady brother, Louie. I’ve seen Mr. Bender in two other recent Old Globe’s shows, Opus and The Mystery of Irma Vep. The latter was one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen in my life. I hope he’ll remain a repeat performer here in San Diego.