Cheesy 80’s pop music blares from the speakers under vivid mood lighting, and everyone’s talking about their feelings and their exes. Is this a retro-inspired nightclub? No, but the dated yet whimsical feel of the stories presented at Logic, Luck, and Love is nearly the same, giving a satisfying dose of sweetness that inspires sighs or eyerolls, depending on how much cuteness one can take.
The story scenario is simple, with four actors giving you their outlook on love and romantic history. This eclectic crew highlights gender and sexuality issues as well as the club scene, dismal statistics, and online dating. But while the characters at first seem to conform to narrow stereotypes — from the “weird aunt” lesbian to the cougar divorcee — the beauty in the storytelling comes in the evolution of each of these individuals. It’s compelling for sure, especially since the actors are retelling tales from their own lives.
But while their words were eloquent, by and large, the cast’s presentation of them was far simpler, and that was to their discredit. Rattling off monologues on an empty stage is sure to be a difficult task, but lines that gushed of romance and sarcasm sometimes seemed unnatural and fell flat, lacking high energy. More examples of this streamlined acting included much overused hand gestures and botched comic delivery. In other words, the cast of Logic, Luck and Love was a little too mellow for the finely melodramatic script.
Whatever the show’s faults were, Molly Kelly wasn’t one of them. Her high-octane performance came off as genuine, whether she was re-enacting approaching a love interest at a bar or imagining her hand wearing a wedding ring. Not only were Kelly’s struggles with sexuality and insecurity believable, they were funny, too. She fleshed out her self-portrayal with big grins and playful vocal tones, allowing the audience to laugh with her most painful moments.
The biggest surprise in the performance, though, came from Dustin Fisher. Through a hard-nosed realist at the beginning of the show, his love story soon became the most poignant and touching. Fisher played Dustin with deadpan, dry humor for most of the play, yet eventually became passionate, and even seemed close to tears during one anecdote. It was hard not to be touched by his final moments on stage.
The swelling soundtrack and vivid lighting hues of John Crowley happily coexisted with the production’s amorous themes, and provided an entertaining context for many of the individual scenes. And many small moments were quite memorable, if others were clichéd or bland. So when in the toss-up of deciding whether or not to see Logic, Luck and Love, know it will be most worthwhile when your romantic side is hungering for a saccharine-filled snack.
Logic, Luck and Love has 4 more performances at the Wonderbox, 629 New York Ave NW, Washington, DC.
Out of a possible top rating of 5, Julia rates this a 3.
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