Good Dramas

Last Saturday, I found myself lounging in my pajamas longer than usual. I felt like a zombie after a late night for my husband, Bob, and me—getting to bed at 1 a.m. That has not happened for a long time—since Bob is usually up at about 4:30 a.m. to do his show.

   We were caught up in late rounds of NCAA college basketball games. Two teams we have a big interest in, Louisville and Kentucky, were playing each other at 10 o’clock Friday night. There is a huge rivalry between them, not only because both are located in Kentucky, but the coaches of each team have some Massachusetts history. That history took place while we were living in Boston. John Calipari, now the University of Kentucky coach, used to be the coach at the University of Massachusetts. Rick Pitino, at about the same time, was the coach of the NBA’s Boston Celtics. Both are terrific and highly competitive. By the time we arrived home from an earlier engagement (more on that below), the second half was just starting and the score was neck and neck, right down to the end until Kentucky triumphed. I suppose our neighbors may have wondered what all the commotion coming from our condo was about.

Gulfshore Playhouse, Naples, presents All My Sons by Arthur Miller at the Norris Center   The event earlier last Friday night is at the heart of this Paradise Post—the opening night of Gulfshore Playhouse’s final production of the season, Arthur Miller’s classic, All My Sons. I felt somewhat reluctant about going; last week was hectic and I felt drained. Besides, I was still chuckling about the last play we saw at Gulfshore Playhouse, The Game’s Afoot, by Ken Ludwig, which, by the way, was Gulfshore Playhouse’s biggest hit ever with sold-out performances throughout its run. How could any play be better than that? Still, I felt compelled to go to this play.

   We knew something special was in store, because when we spied Gulfshore Playhouse Founder and Producing Artistic Director Kristen Coury in the theater, she glowed with confidence and calm reserve, knowing the audience would be wowed.

   The show’s plot, based on actual events, concerns two families in the aftermath of World War II and takes place in a quiet Ohio neighborhood. A marriage proposal unlocks secrets and threatens to shatter the American dream. We were riveted by this classic from the beginning to the end. For the final 15 minutes, I could hear people crying. The two-plus hour performance seemed like minutes, and as the house lights came up for the curtain call, the audience rose as one for a standing ovation. Gulfshore Playhouse’s production of All My Sons is the best play I have ever seen.

Actor William Parry stars in Gulfshore Playhouse, Naples, production of All My Sons   At the after party, we had the chance to chat with the lead actor for All My Sons, William Parry (right). His credits include numerous shows on Broadway, serving as an understudy for Richard Burton and Richard Harris, and appearing on the TV show Law & Order. Parry was “over the moon” to be able to perform at Gulfshore Playhouse, and said the word is getting out in New York that this is the place to be. As for working with Coury, Parry said she is one of the best directors he has ever worked with … ever.

If you love the theater, you must not miss this production of All My Sons.


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