Alhambra’s Breaking Legs

Orange Park Community Theatre opened Tom Dulack’s Breaking Legs at their playhouse on Moody Road in Orange Park. It will run through April 13, 2014. This is the first community theatre production of this comedy; it was part of the Alhambra Dinner Theatre‘s 2004 season starring Frank Gorshin.

This is the tale of a New England College professor Terrance (Carter Cheatum) who is also a part-time playwright. He is trying to get financing from a trio of Italian mobsters in the Boston area to get his play staged Off-Broadway. He has some connections to the family who owns the restaurant where all the action takes place, as the alluring 28 year old Angie (Brianna Wilson). Now she manages the place for her father Lou (Stan Mesnick), makes $50,000 a year , and owns an expensive car and two condos. Not bad for a college dropout!

Lou has two gangster cronies who are his business partners: Tino (Ray Chute) and Mike (Bill Leseur) the apparent head “Godfather.” During the first act, they sit around a table eating and discussing investing in a play, something totally new to them. The play is about a murder but Mike would like to have some music it, and a better name like ” The Student Prince” since it is so catchy.

One of the complications that is immediately apparent is that Angie has the hots for the professor despite their age difference. He is in his 40’s and an attractive man, and Lou would like for Angie to marry, he needs grandchildren. In one of the funniest scenes in the show, Angie persuades Terrance to give her a foot massage which results in a prolonged ecstatic response.

The Mafiosi trio members take a break from their gangster chatter to shake down a poor guy who is late with the payment on his loan. Frankie (Tom DeBorde) doesn’t have a chance against these down to business “hit” men, if you know what we mean. We will leave the outcome of his plight for you to discover when you see the play.

One of the stars of this show is the excellent set designed and built by Stan Mesnick, who also directed this play with Shelley Hayes as Assistant Director. Mr. Mesnick collaborated with Barbara and David wells on the marvelous private dining room of Lou’s Italian restaurant. It has paneled walls and wooden chairs and includes a bar, interesting artwork, baskets filled with fruit, and other furnishings that contribute to authenticity.

About Dick Kerekes & Leisla Sansom

The Dual Critics of EU Jacksonville have been reviewing plays together for the past nine years. Dick Kerekes has been a critic since 1980, starting with The First Coast Entertainer and continuing as the paper morphed into EU Jacksonville. Leisla Sansom wrote reviews from time to time in the early 80s, but was otherwise occupied in the business world. As a writing team, they have attended almost thirty Humana Festivals of New America Plays at Actors Theatre in Louisville, Kentucky, and many of the annual conferences sponsored by the American Theatre Critics Association, which are held in cities throughout the country. They have reviewed plays in Cincinnati, Chicago, Miami, Sarasota, Minneapolis, Orlando, New York, Philadelphia, Sarasota, San Francisco, Shepherdstown, and The Eugene O’Neill Center in Waterford, Massachusetts. They currently review about one hundred plays annually in the North Florida area theaters, which include community, college, university, and professional productions.

april, 2022

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