Fringe Review: 'An Evening With Sarah Pettyfer'

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An Evening With Sarah Pettyfer is an odd title for this even odder piece, for two reasons. First, at just 45 minutes, the production is more a brief chat. And second, the character of Sarah exists more as a framing device for a story that has little to do with her.
An Evening with Sarah Pettyfer
Baby Night Theatre Company – Orlando, FL
7 DATES THROUGH MAY 29, 2016
Venue: Blue
Length: 45 Min
Price: $6 (Disc: FA | FV | MIL | STU | SR)
Rating: 13 & Up – Mild Adult Language
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Sarah, a washed-up star more accustomed to Boston’s Symphony Hall than the cramped quarters of the Blue Venue, has turned up at Fringe to impart the tale of her hunchback acquaintance, Howard, and his friend Margaret. Aging and unfulfilled, the two dream up a scheme to escape their humdrum life – if Sarah would just stop her meddling.

Everett Mason is more competent at playing Sarah than he was at writing the play, which lacks emotional impact and a raison d’être. And, regrettably, the performances by Misha Lambert (Howard) and Eliza Solomon (Margaret), though amusing at times, can’t make up for the script’s shortcomings. Mason does deserve some credit for his quirky sensibility and deliciously dark humor surrounding a velour track suit and a tragically misplaced scarf, but such comedic insights are too few and far between.

Sarah tells us at the beginning of the show that she has stories to “curl your hair.” But, instead, she focuses on the aforementioned weird but rather boring tale of her two friends, giving one the impression that this play broke down in the development stage.

“I’m sure you’re all wondering whatever did happen to Howard and Margaret,” Sarah concludes. No, not really, but maybe at next year’s Fringe you could finally get around to telling us about those “hair curlers” you promised.

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