By Brooke Dennis, Flagler College Student
St. Augustine’s Limelight Theatre opened its production of Sam Shepard’s critically acclaimed Fool for Love on January 18, with the show on stage through February 11.
The play opens with a distracted woman, May, fussing about a small motel room in the Mojave Desert, clearly waiting for something or someone. In enters Eddie, an old lover of May’s that tries to convince her to come back with him to Wyoming to settle on a farm together. May refuses to leave, claiming that she has made a new life in this town, with a job and a new man. Eddie doesn’t believe this and tries to coerce May to come back to him by any means necessary, even as she voices her fears that their relationship will repeat the same destructive cycle it has for the past fifteen years. In the middle of this arguing enters a character only known as the Old Man, who comments on Eddie and May’s bickering, and serves to give the audience background knowledge neither of the other two will provide.
As small as a four-person cast can seem, this cast filled out the entire Koger-Gamache Studio. Under the direction of Mike Beaman, the actors valiantly took on the deep, twisting words of Shepard’s world.
Actor Terrence Scott played Eddie with both detachment and vulnerability, rough and tough at some times, but showing the hurt that his and May’s relationship has caused him at others.
Alexis Ayala plays the role of May in her acting debut, giving the character a harried, nervous energy, great choices given the circumstances.
James Bullock as the Old Man toes the line between participating character and observant specter for most of the play, having warmth while keeping a distance, leaving the audience wondering what tidbit of knowledge he will reveal next.
Finally, Noah Budkoski, one of two high school actors playing the role of Martin, brings to the cast a surrogate audience member, asking the questions the audience desperately wants to ask as May and Eddie dance around the truth of their relationship.
Domenic Grasso’s set design brought the audience in and had them be voyeurs, complicit in the action, particularly with the doorway of the motel being the only pathway to the seats. Lighting designer Carl Liberatore shifts from the reality of Eddie and May to the dream-like world of the Old Man with such deftness that you don’t realize what’s happened until the Old Man has begun speaking.
The crew of Fool for Love consists of Mike Beaman (Director), Nikki Falcao (Stage Manager), Cameron Sparks (Assistant Stage Manager, Light and Sound Board Operator), Carl Liberatore (Lighting Designer), Shelli Long (Props Mistress), and Domenic Grasso (Set Designer).
Don’t miss your opportunity to see this heartbreaking production at the Limelight Theatre in St. Augustine. For reservations and additional information, call 904-825-1164 or visit limelight-theatre.org