THE WRITER’S MIND
nytheatre.com review by Ivanna Cullinan
The Writer’s Mind is a program of three short, very funny plays
by Dennis DiClaudio. His dexterity with words creates a world as off
kilter as Fred Astaire dancing up a wall and across a ceiling, and just
as delightful. The plays are directed with speed and simplicity by
Leonard Kelly, and produced by Michael J. Ewing, who is everywhere in
August 15, 2003
He first appears as A Guy, the hapless date in "Harelip and Sputnik." Guy has never learned to operate well in this world. The reasons for his inability are honestly sad, yet utterly disrespected and become very funny. Put it this way: sometimes there are things about your date that shouldn’t be known too soon. Guy shows an astonishing commitment to this date and its ever-spiraling horror. A Girl, played with unrelenting drive and verve by Amanda Schoonover, is a force with whom to be reckoned. Kellianne McCullion is the waitress forced to endure that reckoning.
"Scenes From the Life & Times of Little Billy Liver" is my favorite of the three. An almost Hogarthian progress, this rise-and-fall style story had me groaning, laughing, and anxious to see what happened next. Little Billy’s noble, sacrificing mother (McCullion), a trucker with a heart of gold (Brad Panosian), and a crotchety garage owner (David Dallas) shape the first portion of Billy’s life. Although all are wonderful, David Dallas is especially strong, using his comedic skills with material that is so wrong to make it so very right. As the story proceeds, Michael J. Ewing is great as the savvy and ruthless talent agent. Schoonover’s photographer exploits her camera in such a way as to put Austin Powers to shame. The pickup, played by Nick Battiste, explored all the envy and adulation of fame. This is a cautionary tale that proves the value of a great supporting cast.
"Writer’s Mind" is the revenge of the writer, delivered with great skill by Michael J. Ewing. No one is safe in this megalomaniacal fantasy—audience, actors, directors, or critics. The writer gets to speak, and oh, does he have some bottled up resentments to let loose! It is a very funny piece and the audience seemed to enjoy it enormously.
The Writer’s Mind is a great laugh with a wonderful cast, just see it.