Monday, September 26, 2011
Over the weekend, Pipeline Theatre Company premiered their new play Felix & the Diligence . It's an absurdly silly and fun show written by Colby Day and directed by Daniel Johnsen. Set on the Atlantic Ocean, against the backdrop of World War II, the play features a slew of ridiculous and comical characters thrown together under the guise of "high stakes cod fishing."
More about this seafaring show, after the jump!
I went into the play knowing very little about it and left pleased and smiling. I'll steer away from any detailed plot description, with the hope that you'll have a similar experience. Part Shakespeare, part Disney, all absurdly funny and crude, Felix & the Diligence takes the audience on a nautical adventure, narrated by an old blind sailor named Henley (a crew member on the Diligence). And of course, Henley is played by a young woman with perfect-vision. In addition to cross dressing and secret identities, the show includes singing, sword fighting, sea monsters, sailor mouthes, Nazis, and even Amelia freakin' Earhart, all on a perfectly constructed ship deck of a stage.
Set designer Andy Yanni does a great job creating a superb stage for the actors to use. Felix & the Diligence is definitely an ensemble piece, with every actor succeeding in bringing to life the detailed nuances and idiosyncrasies of writer Colby Day's crazy characters. While all the actors give solid performances in this tightly-acted and well-paced play, Nicole Spiezio was particularly hilarious as Henley. In a masochistic way, I totally loved her constant cursing at the audience! And kudos to Meagan Kensil for stepping in for Alastair Falk and being such a charming Captain Chapman (yeah, I fell for the understudy bit, and you will too despite this telling review).
Overall, Felix & the Diligence is just a fun, comically chaotic play on an awesomely designed stage. I've come to expect a good theater-going experience from the folks at Pipeline and I'm happy to say that they've delivered again. If you haven't seen one of their shows, Felix & the Diligence is a fine place to start.
Felix & The Diligence, Or A Play About Fisherman in the 1940's
Written by Colby Day
Directed by Daniel Johnsen
Produced by Burton T. Frey Jr.
Featuring: Willy Appelman, Samuel Chapin, Fernando Contreras, Glenn Apollo Hergenhahn, Nathaniel Katzman, Meagan Kensil, Katelyn Manfre, Brad Mielke, Benj Mirman, Edward Raube-Wilson, Arielle Siegel, Allison Smith, Nicole Spiezio, and Mike Steinmetz
September 27, 28, 28, 30 at 8pm
September 25 at 3pm
October 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 at 8pm
October 1, 7, 8 at 10:30pm
220 E 4th Street (between Ave A & B)
New York, NY
$20 general, $15 for students (code STU15)
For tickets, please click here.