By: Walter Ruff
Every generation reinvents child rearing, thinking they have new insights the previous generation did not, almost as if their generation was the first to raise brilliant scientists, authors, painters, inventors and statesmen. The current breeding class puts an immense amount of pressure on themselves to find the BEST preschool, getting put onto waiting lists and using acceptance into a good program like Bright Ideas as parental bragging rights.. Didactic Theatre and this play’s Director, Christopher Carroll, have mounted Bright Eyes, a very funny, thought provoking comedy at the DC Arts Center in Adams Morgan. This play is all the more relevant because of the wave of young successful couples moving back into the upper North West area of the city near Adams Morgan where the DC Arts Center is located. Every Saturday one can see couples making their weekly stroll to the grocery pushing “Maggie” or “Seth” in an expensive baby carriage to the Whole Foods Store near Logan Circle. Didactic Theatre has captured the blissful family experience and twisted it ever so carefully to portray the darkly funny side of finding a good nursery school. Murder? 45 Caliber Hand Guns? All Natural Poisons? All that and more makes up the dark comedy in Eric Coble’s play that is as sarcastic as it is funny. Big ABC baby blocks, colorful and happy, become the minimal stage design, while cool children’s tunes and nursery sounds make up the excellent musical montage.
Leo Goodman as Josh and Kristy Powers as Geneva play the parents of a toddler whom are seeking the ultimate Pre School. Mr. Goodman is hilarious, delivering one funny line after another while Ms. Powers as Geneva starts out as the overwrought, anxious wife and ends up as a plotting killer mom. Chain smoking childcare givers, proud dads with camcorders and preschool supervisors giving conflicting advice to parents with hand puppets fill this comedy with continuous laughs. Marissa Molnar, Dana Edwards and Linden Taylor all provide strong comedic performances as well. I cannot envision anyone seeing Bright Ideas and not having an enjoyable time. The production is everything a good comedy should be.
Directed by Christopher Carroll OCTOBER 21 – NOVEMBER 13 * Friday and Saturdays @ 10pm * Sundays @ 3pm * Saturday, October 22nd @ 3pm * Sunday, October 23rd @ 7:30pm * Wednesday, October 26th @ 7:30pm * Wednesday, November 2nd @ 7:30pm DC Arts Center 2438 18th Street Washington, DC 20009 Tix: $15-20 Starring Leo Goodman, Kristy Powers, Dana Edwards, Marissa Molnar, & Linden Tailor