Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Review of Filament Theatre Ensemble's Lifeboat

Once upon a time I went to a show and it was called Lifeboat. It was by Nicola McCartney and it was directed by Julie Ritchey. It was about these two girls Beth Cummings (Mara Dale) and Bess Walder (Molly Bunder) who met on this ship that was taking them to Canada because the war was getting too scary and there were too many bombing in England, so parents were sending away their children so they could go to a better place to stay with relatives. But then there is a giant shipwreck because the Nazis had bombed them, and they were put on a lifeboat. The play is about the journey that they go on and the memories they have once they are on the lifeboat. It was about friendship, World War II, and bravery. I thought that this was an amazing show. It was a true story which made it even more amazing and it taught me a lot about this very sad historical event and it also told me about these two real women who are heroes, basically, for going through this event and surviving it.

I thought the set (designed by Andrew Marchetti) was really cool. It was awesome because they only used some chairs and a table to make most of the scenes. But then there was also a platform and a bunch of suitcases and a piano. The chairs and the tables and the platform simulated different things, the ship and their homes, and also the lifeboat. I also really loved the sound (by Melissa Schlesinger) and the lights (by Daniel Chapman) they used because they really contributed to the story. Like when they were on the lifeboat they used the lights to show that the water was there and the ship was sinking and the sound let you hear the crackling flames of the ship going down. I thought that the actors' way of showing the different people slipping off the lifeboat, where they put both of their hands out and would have them each slip away off the table, was very cool and kind of sad. The lights helped a lot with that too.

The flashbacks were of the girls' lives back at home and you got to see what everything was like before the shipwreck happened. You got to see their families and how they missed them so much, and I thought that was very sweet. It contributed a lot to the sadness and bittersweetness of the show. Since there were only two people in the show, they played all the different parts. I thought that was really cool. I think it would be hard to switch characters and personalities so quickly. It made it be more of a spectacle. It also felt like the girls were family to each other because that might be all they had left. The friends were playing the parts of the family members.

The story I think is a kind of bittersweet one because you get to meet all these people who die, but then you also get to see all the people who survive. Beth and Bess seemed like great friends. They didn't have a lot in common, but even people who don't have a lot in common still sometimes become amazing friends. Beth was from Liverpool and was very polite and quiet but was pretty poor. And Bess was middle class from London and wanted to get away and become a movie star. And she always spoke her mind. The first time you see their friendship spark is when they find out that they both love The Wizard of Oz. My favorite part was definitely the ending because it showed you that their friendship was everlasting and I thought that was really sweet.

People who would like this show are people who like The Wizard of Oz, suspense, and friendship. This is the second time that this show has happened at Filament, and I hope they do it again because I am sad that I only got to see it right before it closed. I would definitely see it again!

Photos: Christian Libonati

1 comment:

Dominick Maino said...

Enjoyed your review. Very well done with great insight into the story, the setting and the makings of great theater! Keep it up!

Dominick M. Maino
Member Board of Directors, Filament Theatre