Oct. 23, 2012, 12:30 p.m.

Realistic play performed by outstanding actresses

five_women
Five Women Wearing the Same Dress, for adult audiences only.

Courtesy

There’s nothing like a wedding to bring out the crazy in people. Watching someone move on with his or her life forces you to evaluate your own, which usually proves you may have issues. And, boy, do the women in “Five Women Wearing the Same Dress” have issues.

The Laramie County Community College theatre department play had two acts, one setting play that was about five bridesmaids taking refuge in a bedroom away from a wedding as they drown themselves in pity, booze, sadness, drugs and charming tales…and it’s hilarious.

Dip ya hats to the actresses

Because the setting is unchanging and very minimal in space (especially wearing an interesting type of dress), a hat must be charmingly dipped to director Dave Gaer, LCCC communication and theatre instructor, for making the most of it. When multiple women are in the room and two are having their own conversation, the others rummage, eat, smoke, drink and react. They didn’t just sit and await their next line. These women are at a more open period in their lives than they ever will be, and they act accordingly.

Speaking of the women, many more hats by many more gentlemen must be dipped to the cast. Each woman brought her A game in roles that were hilarious as well sad, pathetic and unguarded as they discussed life, opinions and sex, sex, sex.

The dominating force was wielded by Elizabeth Wood as Georgeanne. Much like Melissa McCarthy’s Oscar-nominated performance in “Bridesmaids” (but much less, well, strange), Wood possessed a real knack for both vocal and physical comedy as she took over the majority of the play, even when not speaking. As well as being funny, she also showed a lingering regret her character lived in that was always made apparent in her actions.

Contrast between characters nicely played

Another surprising performance was from Caitlyn Fontes as Frances. A dedicated Christian, Fontes showed the innocence and sweetness of her performance that was fun to watch and gave a stark contrast to otherwise more experienced characters. All the other actresses were great, too. Erin Williams, Marcie Smith and Megan Kraushaar all properly and fully portrayed their characters’ (Meredith, Trisha and Mindy respectively) anger, sadness, experience and perceptions, clearly and demandingly.

In the beginning, however, Williams was a bit more intense in her performance than it appeared necessary, but it later became clear that her character’s true personality required a bit more aggressive behavior. Granted, I still believe there was a quieter, natural version of any behavior, and sometimes that side would’ve benefitted the comedic delivery in some sequences.

Bo Paulsrud had a small role as the only male character in the play, Tripp. Though not on long, he made the most of his time, exuberating charm and honesty as he walked on looking like a James Dean-type (even the hair!) and contributed half of a charming and alluring back and forth with Trisha (Smith).

Cast sets milestone for college

Not much may be expected of community college theater, but the talented cast’s handling of adult material and Gaer’s experienced direction exceeded any doubts, if there were any to begin with. Funny and layered at the same time, this was a milestone for everyone involved.

I was a groomsman at a wedding this summer, and it angers me I couldn’t have had a similar experience like the one in the play. I like booze and gossiping, too, ya know!


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Five Women Wearing the Same Dress recieves highest award for LCCC

Alongside compliments from the campus community, the “Five Women Wearing the Same Dress” acting team received an award considered to be the highest award Laramie County Community College has yet to receive.

The Five Women team received the Meritorious Achievement in Ensemble Acting from the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festivals, according to Dave Gaer, play director and LCCC instructor, “The right people came together at the right time,” Gaer said. “They all learned a lot during the process and were able to set aside their own personal goals to create an ensemble that had a lasting impact on the audience.”

Jason Pasqua, another LCCC theatre instructor, said, “To recognize ensemble acting is to recognize the healthy taming of ego and self-aggrandizement in performance.” These students did a remarkable job of performing as a unit that supported one another, rather than each actor focusing on working only for her role, he added.

“It is to recognize that there is no star, that an actor’s performance is written in the other actors,” he elaborated.

The dean of arts and humanities, Kathleen Urban, described the play as “funny, poignant, brash and fast-paced.”