Regional Reviews: Boston
Say You Love Satan
Zeitgeist Stage Company kicks off the 2004-2005 Boston theatre season with Say You Love Satan, a hilarious tale of the "relationship from hell" - literally - that earned Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa a Playwright's Award at last year's New York International Fringe Festival.
Director David J. Miller has a knack for getting all the elements right. He begins with great physical casting and a costume designer (Tracey Campbell) who picks clothes that speak volumes about the characters and contribute to the overall snappy look of the production.
Next, Miller devises a simple, evocative environment (he's his own scenic designer) always using the BCA's Black Box Theatre in interesting and appropriate ways. And he doesn't forget to have fun with the sound design either, including, for this production, having Walter Eduardo give us nicely done "environmental" sound for a couple of scenes.
Say You Love Satan is worthy of such care and effort. Aguirre-Sacasa does what many clever, young writers do, namely hook us with a clever, zany setup and charm us with a liberal sprinkling of "in-the-know" cultural references. But then he rises above most of his peers by getting us to care about the characters and resolving the whole silly mess in a satisfying and heartfelt way.
At the center of the story is Andrew (John Meigs), a graduate student who immerses himself in Dostoyevsky at the Laundromat on a Friday night to avoid the former love of his life who did him wrong (Jeff Zorabedian), his current "perfect" boyfriend (Alexander Albregts) he can't bring himself to commit to and his forever best friend (Angela Rose) who is much too full of good advice for a guy who's down.
Andrew's gloomy life is transformed by the dangerous looking dude at the next washing machine (Brian Turner) who, after a long night of club hopping and a romantic second date, admits to being the son of Satan. No surprise that all of Andrew's neglected friends (along with a few of his enemies) are called upon to extricate him from the incredible situation he soon finds himself in.
To reveal more plot details would be to spoil the fun. And fun it is, for the delightful ensemble of young actors as well as for the audience. Suffice it to say, the consequences of dallying with the devil at the expense of true friendships speaks volumes about contemporary relationships.
Say You Love Satan presented by Zeitgeist Stage in the Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) Black Box Theater now through September 11th with performances Thursday and Friday at 8 PM, Saturday at 5 & 8 PM and Sunday at 7 PM. Tickets are $25; discounted tickets for Seniors & Students are $20; "Pay What You Can" performances are every Thursday. Tickets may be purchased from the BCA box office at 617.426.ARTS (617.426.2787) or on-line through TheaterMania.com. The BCA is located at 539 Tremont Street in Boston's South End and is handicap accessible. For more information visit the company's web site at ZeitgeistStage.com.
- Suzanne Bixby