San Francisco Fringe 2017
“The date, 1965. The place, a land beyond your wildest imagination. Join us for SUBMITTED FOR YOUR APPROVAL, a trio of inter-connected one acts that take you on a journey of the mind, both fantastic and surreal, realized for today in the style and tone of the original Rod Sterling masterpiece.”
Three short one act plays directed by Sinohui Hinojosa and inspired by Rod Sterling’s surreal series of stories shown on TV are set in 1965. Each is introduced in a black and white futuristic (for the time) science fiction film – complete with spacey music and a character speaking in an intriguing tone of voice.
The first play is Silent Partner by co-writers John Tulin and Meghan Maugeri. Set in a little shop, full of atmosphere, which sells curiosities, a gentleman wants to buy an old typewriter. But this is no ordinary typewriter! After we meet several other characters that arrive and disappear, such as the lady in the green dress or another lady in a red dress, short vignettes – and a wondrous surprise – take us back to the curiosity shop!
Next, after a set change is The Perfect Child by Matthew Miller. A mother in a crisp apron flicks a feather duster about the furniture and interacts with her two children. This is a typical suburban household of the times in the 60s so the children are supposed to do what their parents want and not make waves. Dinner table conversation when father comes home from the office is fascinating and reminds us of the social mores of the time – and not too distant past. The language is apt and interesting for the situation that arises. This is an entertaining play with good acting and a spine-chilling end.
The Paradox Syndrome by Sinohui Hinojosa is a thought-provoking play with interesting characters. Professor Harrington writes a letter to someone whose life is forever changed – I do not want to spoil the ending so will not say any thing else about it!
Four very good actors play all the parts in the three plays : John S. Boles, Moshe Goodman, Mia Blasdel, Emily Marie Grant and Brian Levi is The Narrator. It’s an ambitious 59 minute show with a lot of set pieces and props, which could benefit from some streamlining for efficient transitions.
Out of the three plays The Perfect Child is such an interesting period piece and story that it would be even more satisfying in a longer version.
This show will appeal to you if you are a fan of Twilight Zone shows, for sure!