Reviewed by Michael Edwards

The Skylight Theatre Company's production of The Sandwich Ministry is a beautiful, heart opening evening of exceptionally well-acted storytelling. A tight cast of three renders a thoughtful and low-key passionate script with uncommon focus and consistently enlightening revelations.

The press release plotline reads: "A small town. A once in a century storm. Three women gather to supply food for neighbors who have been displaced from their homes by floods. As they contend with the damage of the storm, they learn that what brings them together threatens to tear them apart. Is their friendship strong enough to make it through the night?"

Written by Miranda Rose Hall and directed by Katie Lindsay, the play offers a refreshing point of view re true community in today's world. It zooms out from the petty jealousy plotlines that are typical, or the run of the mill 'you hurt me' storyline to reveal a paired down possibility no one saw coming: The idea that looking out for each other in these times isn't that hard.

Ms. Hall's script is commanding and human. Real people saying real things, as well as real people NOT saying real things, and just allowing the air in the room to speak. Ms. Lindsay appears to be a master of pacing. The pace is quick and the behavior restrained, until it's not. A truly beautiful heart is revealed with this script.

Jayne Taini's 'Joyce' as the wise elder 'Boomer / GenX' of the three is magical in her embodiment of a giving soul. An angel by choice, not naivete, Ms. Taini is a bright and beautiful light on the stage. An obvious veteran of storytelling (we can see by her mastery). We smile as she takes in and educates her younger cohorts. A wonderful performance. 

Maha Chehlaoui's 'Claudia' is an extremely skilled behaviorist. Keeping her secrets throughout, she plays a game with the audience and literally explodes once her reveal comes to fruition. A beautifully rendered arch.

Jordan Hull's 'Hannah' is the centerpiece. Brilliantly vacillating between vulnerable and emotionally untouchable, Ms. Hull gives her character a rare alacrity. Her mind moves so quickly and with such a natural flow, we are always clear where she is, even when she is offstage. A young master at work, Jordan Hull's Hannah is worth seeing the play twice just to track her extremely organic arch. 

The set is immediately believable. One feels they have walked into the wrong space when entering. The script calls for a church rec room that smells like a church rec room and that is what we experience, sans the smell of course. Lights and sound are seamless, creating a reality rather than narrating the emotional journey.  

A wonderful evening of theatre at the Skylight. Do not miss. 

Performances of The Sandwich Ministry are at 8:30pm Fridays & Saturdays, 3:00pm Sundays and 7:30pm Mondays through July 7, 2024 (no performance on Monday, June 10). Run-time is approximately 75 minutes (no intermission)

Information and reservations: (213) 761-7061. Online ticketing:

Skylight Theatre, 1816 1/2 N. Vermont Ave, LA, 90027

Posted By DH Magazine on June 06, 2024 05:17 pm | Permalink