It’s a chilly January night in 2007 and a good looking, younger couple are awaiting their dinner friends of their swanky Higher East Aspect condominium. We quickly discover out it’s really a small gathering of their nearest and dearest to have a good time their engagement. Josh is clearly very profitable and, collectively together with his Grace Kelly lookalike fiancé, Katherine, appears to have the world by the tail. Descending upon their insanely stylish condominium is Katherine’s Waspy mother and father, Conrad and Gail; Katherine’s school roommate, Haley, and her husband Kai, who works with Josh; one other school pal, Alan, who’s now a progressive philosophy professor at Columbia; and displaying up late is a boisterous Johnny, who grew up with Josh in a tough knocks neighborhood and is between deployments within the army.
All begins as is to be anticipated at an engagement get together with jovial hugs, toasts and reward giving. Dialog weaves out and in of awkward and humorous moments concerning opposing politics and life with hints of previous wounds and unstated alliances. As they transfer on to dinner all goes to plan till a sudden wine spill units in movement a sequence of occasions that upends not solely the night however every considered one of their lives.
I received’t give any specifics as a result of the twists, turns and gasp-inducing reveals are what make “The Engagement Social gathering” at Geffen Playhouse such enjoyable to look at. Samuel Baum’s brisk 80 minute play with no intermission is a sharply written, front room thriller that may have you ever on the sting of your seat. The story captivates, as does the solid, because it explores notions of id, friendships, loyalties and secrets and techniques.
Darko Tresnjak deftly directs his dynamic solid to maintain issues taut because the suspicions and accusations construct to a shattering conclusion. The Alexander Dodge set is spectacular – a rotating exploration of a classy, fashionable Higher East Aspect condominium with enviable excessive ceilings. There are three areas characters transfer by way of – from the impeccably embellished dwelling and eating space with a spiral staircase to the impossibly modern, white kitchen and up into the bed room that overlooks the entrance door and road.
Jonah Platt leads the solid as Josh and does an awesome job of slowly revealing his worry and ache as his successful façade begins to crack. Bella Heathcote brings easy type and style to the function of Katherine whereas Lauren Worsham provides Kath’s pal, Hayley, an authenticity of somebody on the sting. As her husband, Kai, Brian Lee Huynh walks an ideal line of admiration and resentment Kai feels about Josh’s success. Mark Jacobson combines a professorial intelligence and social awkwardness to the function of Alan, who appears to seek out himself sadly in the course of every of the varied conflicts. Brian Patrick Murphy is a breath of contemporary air as Johnny, bringing each the largest laughs and essentially the most grounded moments with Josh. He undoubtedly pumps up the power amongst this higher class and upwardly cell group. Rounding out the solid superbly are veteran actors Richard Bekins and Wendie Malick as Katherine’s mother and father. Malick is pitch good as the marginally boozy, irreverent however completely acceptable getting older socialite and Bekins delivers a nuanced efficiency because the seemingly doting and protecting father.
This completely engrossing engagement get together takes you on a nailbiting, psychological thriller of a journey, elucidating how deceit will fester and meet up with you no matter how rigorously you craft the lie.
THE ENGAGEMENT PARTY runs by way of November 5, 2023 at Gil Cates Theater at Geffen Playhouse positioned at 10886 Le Conte Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90024
Tickets presently priced at $30.00 – $129.00. Obtainable by cellphone at 310.208.2028 or on-line at www.geffenplayhouse.org.
All Geffen Playhouse productions are supposed for an grownup viewers; kids underneath ten years of age is not going to be admitted.
Rush tickets for every day’s efficiency are made obtainable to most of the people one hour earlier than showtime on the field workplace. $35.00 Common/$15.00 Pupil.