by Paul Osborn
The LA Weekly
"Betty Garrett is grand as Cora...Marvin Kaplan
(makes) us laugh out loud!"
by Mark Travis
Produced by Helen Murray
Alexander, Jeanine Anderson, Layla Galloway, Betty
Garrett, Marvin Kaplan. Donald Moss, Malachi Throne,
Dianne Travis; and Seemah Wilder*
18 - July 1, 2007
Fri. & Sat. at 8pm, Sun. at 2pm
Premium (first four rows) $25. Regular $20. Seniors
$17. Groups of ten or more, $15. Students $5.
Tickets On Line
Kutcher replacing Marvin Kaplan June 22- July 1.
Cal Bartlett replacing Malachi Throne June 29- July
Osborn’s enduring play begins as a feather-weight
piece of comic fluff about the tightly interwoven
lives of four aging sisters and their families,
but through its finely crafted structure, it reveals
emotional turmoil dating back 45 years. Three hours
of leisurely paced acting is usually an ordeal,
but director Mark Travis and his superb cast of
seven, most of whom appear much older that their
near 60-plus characters, fill every moment. Dianne
Travis energetically flits through the play as the
youngest and wildest (the only one never married)
of the sisters. As mentally disturbed Carl, Marvin
Kaplan, who still sounds like his unforgettable
cartoon character of Choo-Choo in Topcat, gains
the audience’s empathy for his sad state of
life, while also making us laugh out loud. Additionally,
the two younger (40ish) actors — Abbott Alexander
as Carl’s painfully shy son Homer, and Jeanine
Anderson playing Homer’s desperate fiancée
of 12 years — create some brilliantly acted
moments of discomfort. Betty Garrett is also grand
as Cora, one of the siblings. Unlike most chestnuts,
this sadly comic play holds up extremely well, and
this is the perfect company to revive it.
Garrett and Layla Galloway
Photo by Mark Travis
by Bonnie Kalisher
MORNING'S AT SEVEN
of Theatre West's most famous and popular performers
appear on stage in this revival of Paul Osborn's
1939 play "Morning's at Seven.”
the story of an extended family living in close
proximity, anchored by four aging sisters, Cora,
Arry, Esther and Ida, three of whom are married.
They're ensconced in a familiar dysfunctionality
suspended in place by decades of secrets and deceptions.
Their routine is upset when the youngest of the
family, 40-year-old Homer, who has been still living
with parents Ida and Carl, brings home for a visit
his long-time love Myrtle.
despite the maneuverings of the sisters, it's the
men who are the true eccentrics in the family.
turns out that Myrtle has a secret of her own that
will change the lives of all of them, forever.
cast includes Broadway legend and MGM movie and
TV ("Laverne and Shirley,” "All
in the Family”) star Betty Garrett,
recipient of career achievement awards from the
L.A. Drama Critics' Circle, L.A. Weekly and the
L.A. Women's Theatre Festival; Marvin Kaplan
("Alice,” "Becker,” "Top
Cat,” "Meet Millie”); Malachi
Throne ("It Takes A Thief,” "Ben
Casey”); Abbott Alexander; Jeanine Anderson;
Layla Galloway; Donald Moss; Dianne Travis;
and Seemah Wilder.
Mark Travis directs. He helmed the recent
award-winning Theatre West/Chestnuts production
Lion in Winter.” He has over 60 other
stage-directing credits, including the hit shows
"Time Flies When You're Alive”, and "A
Bronx Tale” (later filmed by Robert DeNiro).
Travis has also directed for film ("Going Under”)
and TV ("The Facts of Life”, "Family
Osborn's other well-known works include "The
World of Suzie Wong”, "On Borrowed Time”
and "A Bell for Adano”.
new mounting of "Morning's at Seven”
is your chance to see some legendary performers
together on the same stage. Don't miss it.