West Coast Florida
Also see Bill's review of I Am Harvey Milk
Megan Rippey, who plays Kelly, hails from Los Angeles. I don't know what personal connections brought her to Urbanite, but Sarasota theatergoers are lucky to have her. Her performance is nuanced and reveals the many layers of a survivor. Brendan Ragan is also excellent as man-child, good natured, slightly metro-sexual Daizy. Natalie Symons as Emily, a client with issues, seems a little young for the part but makes the audience feel for and care about the character. Ms. Symons, sort of on loan from another company where her husband is artistic director, is an extremely versatile actress. Two years ago I encountered her in The Foreigner, perhaps one of the funniest plays I have ever seen, in which she played the girlfriend and was utterly winsome in the part. Here she plays a woman with more emotional depth and pain. I look forward to seeing more of her work.
Great performances from everyone in the cast can only mean one thing: great direction by Brendon Fox. Bio Information reveals that he was a second-year professor of acting at Asolo Conservatory of Acting but now works elsewhere. He brings this play vividly to life; the subject matter is unsettling but I do not find myself repulsed, which I think would be possible without superb directing.
Scenic design by Rick Cannon is a major part of the effectiveness of the production. Costumes by Riley Leonhardt also perfectly capture the moods of the play, and all of the other technical elements are superb.
Urbanite Theatre is proving to be one of the most exciting theatrical venues in the area. I intend to see every one of their future productions.
Urbanite Theatre presents Re Borning through July 5, 2015, at 1487 2nd St. Sarasota, FL 34326. Visit www.urbanitetheatre.com for more information.
Director: Brendon Fox