On behalf of Kurt Benrud, we are proud to receive something unprecedented – an unsolicited review from an inspired audience member!
Doug Deaton’s review of
The Cary Playwrights’ Forum production of Coming Back for Me by Amy da Luz
Really liked “Coming Back For Me” by Cary Playwrights’. “Unqualified Excellence” I told Michael Parker, the director. Superb playwriting. I also enjoyed the Interview with the playwright, Amy da Luz, on YouTube. Obviously, quite a bit autobiographical.
Acting and actor interaction were over-the-top. Melanie Simmons portrayed superlatively and consistently her desires and torment not just with her lines but also by bringing forth the internal emotional torment she was experiencing. After the show she looked a bit drained, and I can believe it. Superlative to use the term twice.
Award for best acting for portraying a character she is not: Xenon Winslow (who plays a 14-year old kid)! Worthy of an award at any level of theatre. Most other roles, I thought, required the actors not to have to do a major deviation from their non-stage personalities.
Shasta (Akili Holder-Cozart) remained beautifully constant, providing a consistent touch of humor to offset this relatively heavy drama which might, otherwise, take the audience down.
Arlene (Joanna Herath) also added delightful comedy.
Effectiveness of sound with music and background noise at a subtle but effective level I have not experienced around here. Well, the car horns weren’t so subtle.
Cute little staging effects. The character Shasta was actually drinking a Shasta ginger ale! After the show, she said it actually zinged her nose once but she perfectly included the grimace into her act.
With intermission—over two hours—but I never experienced time fatigue. There were a lot of set changes, but done in near darkness so they did not bother me. The play requires so many different situations over short and long time periods and settings. They provided the credence to believe the psychological transformations taking place, or not (in the case of the husband, and of the supervisor which played excellent counterpoints to the lead and her son’s transformations).
I have said before many times (probably learned from the life of my musician son) that if a person has true artistic talent inside them, it must be nourished in order for them to thrive; otherwise, they will be miserable.
This play succeeds in making that point!
P.S. I liked that the playwright made it clear that the supernatural was a “they”.
By Doug Deaton
SPECIAL THANK YOU
The Cary Playwrights’ Forum is supported by the United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County, as well as the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.