A review by Erin Fair.
"The Wild Party" is set in the roaring '20's, adapted from the 1928 poem by Joseph Moncure March. The stage is adorned with 1920's furnishings that exemplify the time period. We meet Queenie (Kristina Miller), who is on the hunt for someone who can satisfy her sexual appetite. Soon after, she meets the vaudeville clown Burrs (Quentin Garzon), whose own craving for the flesh is second to none. They are a highly venomous partnership, heavy on sex and high on danger.
This energy cannot sustain itself, so a party is decided upon and Kate (Brittany Rodin) Queenie's frenemy shows up with Black (Jacob Hoff) who becomes Queenie's new lustful attraction. Rounding out the ensemble are people whose names are their identities; Madeleine the dimwit, Eddie the thug and Nadine the minor, to name a few. Mae the Lesbian (Alli Miller) briefly steals the show with "An Old Fashioned Love Story."
Once the party is in full swing, the narrative and the stage get crowded. The undersized stage is dwarfed by the cast of fifteen and they are nearly dancing on top of each other. I've never seen a production so aptly named in "The Wild Party" as it certainly displays a level a debauchery that would make Charlie Sheen blush. There is a particular number titled "Come With Me" and it is exactly what you think it is.
We can sense early on that something really bad is going to happen. However, the level of combustibility remains the same for most of the show, all the foreshadowing gets lost in the permeating shadows. The plot's conclusive act of violence could just as easily have occurred at any point in the show. The action plays at the audience's feet in the small theatre, yet, the sense of a party is never fully realized. The four leads are caught in a whirlwind of sex, drugs, and infidelity, but through cloying ballads these characters are hollowly sketched into artificial figures that are rarely compelling.
Mature Audiences Only
Dorie Theatre at the Complex
Thur- Sun Through Oct 2, 2016.
Box Office: 323-465-0383