the studio players, inc.
Directed by: Paula Keenan -The setting is an upper-class home in the 1970s. The play opens on Bradley and Ann having preprandial cocktails with their ostensibly single son and daughter. The cocktail hour stretches out because "the maid doesn't know how to cook a roast". So the little family carries on consuming increasing amounts of alcohol leading to increasing arguments and laugh out loud comedy!
Their son, John, is an editor at a publishing company and a part-time playwright. He has written a play that seems to present an unflattering picture of the family, and the parents are upset. The discussion of John's play, which is also called
The Cocktail Hour, gives playwright Gurney a lot of opportunity to lampoon the theater scene.
Directed by: Brett Marston - The scene is the living room/kitchen of a small house on an isolated country road, which is shared by Jessie and her mother. Jessie's father is dead; her loveless marriage ended in divorce; her absent son is a petty thief and ne'er-do-well; her last job didn't work out and, in general, her life is stale and unprofitable. As the play begins Jessie asks for her father's service revolver and calmly announces that she intends to kill herself. At first her mother refuses to take her seriously, but as Jessie sets about tidying the house and making lists of things to be looked after, her sense of desperate helplessness begins to build. In the end, with the inexorability of genuine tragedy, she can only stand by, stunned and unbelieving, as Jessie quietly closes and locks her bedroom door and ends her profound unhappiness in one fatal, stunning and deeply disturbing moment—a moment never to be forgotten by those who have witnessed, and come to understand, her plight.
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