Now streaming at lvlt.org through 10/31/20.
Like many other theatre companies around the country, Las Vegas Little Theatre (LVLT) is doing its best to provide streaming content to remain financially viable.
Via a writing competition, the latest offering is a new compilation of twelve locally written, short, two-person plays and monologues. All based upon the Halloween theme of ghosts and ghoulies, “Ghost Light Stories” is a delectable distraction.
In the first monologue, “Olive Struts and Frets,” by Rex McGregor, Sabrina Close plays that theatre ghost you may have heard about; the reason theatres leave the single “ghost light” on the stage when the rest of the place is dark. Thus “Ghost Light Stories.” Directed by Gillen Brey, Close has delightful fun in deploring the lack of actors and crews, and audience during the pandemic.
Then we get “Late Arrival,” by James McIndon. A guest (David Ament) shows up late for his hotel registration and the desk clerk (Anthony Gomez) has a tough time finding a room. Gomez is funny as he concentrates on the computer, ignoring the screams and sounds of chainsaws, and the flickering of lights. Ament goes too far over the top for too long, taking away from the sense of fright. If you’re looking for the suitcase, like I did, it’s out of camera range until the very end.
“Entity,” by Thomas Misuraca, directed by David Ament, feels a touch lacking. While Chris Davies gives an ever-increasing sense of dread as a journalist looking for an exclusive, Blake Michael Boles as the serial murderer doesn’t have enough deviant, sinister fun with the part. There’s a sense of enjoyment lacking which could’ve added to the goosebumps.
The very short monologue, “Call My Name,” by Christine Foster, has Trina Colon lying in bed. In a bit of a let-down, I never did quite catch the arc of this one.
The short, two-person “Ghostie,” performed by Ernest Medina and Shambion Treadwell has potential. A lot of potential. As two young people meeting at a Halloween party and who both hate parties, the issue of feeling left out is well plumbed. The direction by Chris Davies has them facing away from one another almost the entire time, leaving them without any ability to connect at all. There’s thumping in the background, which I assume was supposed to be club music. It was too muted to tell, and it stopped and repeated, stopped and repeated.
If witches are your thing, you’ll get a kick out “Resurrection Gone Bad,” by Adam Yeager and directed by Gillen Brey. Sabrina Close (Witch) screws up a spell and hopes Michael Blair (her brother) will help her fix things. Blair and Close both turn in credible performances, but Close’s lines sometimes get lost.
The monologue “Earthling,” written by John Mabey and directed by David Ament, brings the alien hiding in plain sight. Blake Michael Boles plays it loose and tongue-in-cheek enough that it’s enjoyable from start to finish.
“Flew,” written by Joshua Brewer, won first place in the writing competition. It’s about a woman (Monica Johns) who has escaped an abusive relationship and finds herself visited by the young man (Rowan Johns) in the apartment below. Turns out…no, I can’t spoil it. You’ll just have to see this one for yourself. But I’ll suggest you up the volume on this one because there are times when Monica’s lines get lost.
The third monologue is “An Invitation to Dinner.” Full disclosure: I wrote this rather gothic piece, stilted language and all. Jake Taylor is directed by Gillen Brey and brings just the right touch of fun to my intent with ‘it was a dark and stormy night.’
Shana Brouwers and Anthony Gomez have the most fun of all with “Goodmare,” written by Ron Burch. Is it possible to change the direction of a nightmare? Another one I can’t give away. Directed by Gillen Brey, it’s delightful fun!
In “The Chair,” by James C. Ferguson, Theresa Fullerton and Marty Weaver play a married couple whose dinner guests seem to have vanished. Directed by Walter Niejadlik, this is another fun one, with another twist ending that will make you laugh.
The streaming wraps up with “Stay Out of the Basement,” written and performed by Alex Bassett and directed by Walter Niejadlik. Bassett brings a good sense of reverie to a man whose baby sister disappeared at 10-days old. It’s another twist ending I don’t want to divulge or risk spoiling it.
Costumes and sets fit the pieces, particularly with “An Invitation to Dinner,” and Ginny Adams lit them all with precision.
“Ghost Light Stories” are sure to lighten up your COVID isolation because these were fun. Log on and stream yourself a Halloween treat.
Tickets are $20. Log on at www.lvlt.org.