Imogen Rampton, Abigail Bailey, Fran McMenamin and Harrison North in BLT’s January 2015 production of Brighton Beach Memoirs, directed by Arthur Rochester. Photo: Phil Cairns (http://philcairns.zenfolio.com)
Fri 16 – Sat 24 January 2015 (not Sun 18) at 7.45pm
Brighton Beach Memoirs
by Neil Simon
Directed by Arthur Rochester
The first of a trilogy of plays by Neil Simon about his own early life, this play was a Broadway smash and made a star and Tony Award-winner of Matthew Broderick. Set in the Brighton Beach section of Brooklyn, New York in September 1937, it’s as funny as any of Simon’s comedies but also warm and empathetic. It focuses on the coming-of-age of Eugene Jerome, the 15-year-old character who is Neil Simon’s surrogate.
Obsessed with baseball, experiencing sexual awakening and searching for an identity in the awkward years between being a kid and an adult, living through the Great Depression, the inevitability of World War II and anxiety over the fate of relatives still in Poland.
This is a hilarious but affecting comedy with heart, wit and insight. Simon clearly sets out to go beyond humour and touches a level of emotion we can all share. His keen observation of common, recognisable behaviour and his creation of a historical setting that brings the Depression and the Holocaust to life, make it a richly entertaining theatrical experience.
Eugene : Harrison North
Stanley : Dan Ryan
Laurie : Imogen Rampton
Nora : Abigail Bailey
Jack : Stevie Hughes
Kate : Niki Mylonas
Blanche : Fran McMenemin