Theater Ensemble’s final play of the season, the spring student production of Talley & Son, will close this weekend. Written by Lanford Wilson and set in 1944, the play investigates the multifaceted effects of World War II on a middle class American family.
Talley & Son is directed by senior Rachel Wong-Westbrooke and junior Krystal Swan. Both students have partaken in Theater Ensemble since their respective freshman years, working on tech crew as well as acting. The task of directing allowed Wong-Westbrooke and Swan to challenge themselves as well the Ensemble, and the success of Talley & Son marks an admirable achievement for both directors.
The cast of Talley & Son is an eccentric medley of old and new. The cast is made mostly of seniors, some veterans of Theater Ensemble (Daniel Goldwyn, Pia Mingkwan, Rachel Ozer-Bearson, Chanel Tilghman, and Rachel Wong-Westbrooke) and others recent additions (Savannah Miller and Maddie Zechar).
The casting of the play is excellent, allowing individuals to develop and display personal talent while working as part of a larger cohesive unit. Because the plot twists in Talley & Son affect familial relationships, understanding of the characters is key for actors and audience alike. The dynamic interactions of the characters are very real, suggesting that cast members share bonds that transcend the play.
The set of Talley & Son is superb. From the hand painted wallpaper, to the furniture, to the telephone, all elements of the play replicate the 1940s style.
The period costumes are beautiful, and important for identifying key archetypes. Timmy’s combat attire contrasts with his brother Buddy’s officer’s uniform, and Netta’s plain attire reminds the audience of austerity measures adopted on the home front.
While Talley & Son does not offer the instant gratification of comedy, historical insight and timeless themes make the play a must see.
Catch it before it closes! Thursday, March 29th at 7:00 pm and Friday and Saturday nights at 8:00 pm in the Little Theater.