Monday, July 21, 2014

Talley’s Folly At Summerstage

By Russ Bickerstaff
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The Lanford Wilson comedy Talley’s Folly is a strikingly good fit for outdoor theatre in the summer. There is so much about next month’s production with Summerstage that sounds like a really, really fun trip out of town for an evening.

First of all, there is the play: it’s a one-act comedy set in a gazebo-like outdoor structure in Missouri in July of 1944. The play is staged a little bit later a little further north in summer sixty years later in a beautiful outdoor setting. The lead character addresses the audience right away, delivers the basic elements of the plot and tells them that the story will play out in exactly 97 minutes.

The fact that it’s a one-act makes it a really comfortable drive out and back from the surrounding area. That opening address will be delivered by Phil Stepanski in the male lead. Regrettably, I’m not all that familiar with his work. The female lead in this two-person romantic comedy will be played by Ruth Arnell. Her work has been really, really impressive in the past. Rarely has there been an opportunity to see her this close to the center of the stage. Years ago she was in a studio theater staging of the romantic drama Butterflies Are Free. As witnessed there, Arnell is really enjoyable in a two-person romance. So this should be fun.

Summerstage’s production of Talley’s Folly runs July 24 - Aug. 9 at Lapham Peak State Park in Delafield. For more information, visit Summerstage online.
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