The show started nine minutes late. The opening was stark and intense. I had approximately two minutes of uncertainty and then was hooked and fully engaged in The House Of Yes
, a twisted and witty play by Wendy Macleod, directed by Lee Sankowich (who gave us the original "One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest") and currently on stage at the
The story takes place in 1983 on Thanksgiving. It opens with an intense Jackie-O (Kate Maher) obsessively rearranging the furniture in preparation for her twin brother's return. We realize that she is certifiably crazy in that she somehow has blurred her father's disappearance with the Kennedy assassination. We meet her nervous younger brother Anthony (Nicholas McDonald) and her wry mother (Eileen T'Kaye) who are concerned about whether Jackie-O has taken her meds. Her twin brother Marty (Colin McGurk
) is returning home and is bringing a guest. They've never had a visitor before. The family dynamics are paralleled by the hurricane that is beginning to blow. (Great sound design by Norman Kern) The checkerboard floor hints at the checkered past that is going to be revealed (set design-Adam Haas Hunter). When the guest turns out to be a fiancée - Lesly (
) - Jackie-O starts drinking and Pandora's Box is opened.
Director Lee Sankowich has done a brilliant job in conducting the dynamics and timing of this shocking satire about class snobbery, mental illness, incest, brother rivalry, bodies in the back-yard and more. We are shocked and then we laugh; and then we are shocked at what we've laughed at. Sometimes the action is uncomfortably intense (especially for the audience down stage-left).