"Falling" at Minetta Lane Theatre, October 14, 2012
(photo: Carol Rosegg)
There's an intense situation happening at Minetta Lane Theatre, courtesy of Deanna Jent's new play making its New York premiere.
year old Josh (Daniel Everidge) suffers with fairly extreme autism.
Being over 6 feet tall, weighing well over 200 pounds combined with his
occasionally aggressive and violent behavior sets the stakes pretty
high. Tami (Julia Murney) and Bill (Daniel Pearce) work very hard to
keep their son under control by emphasizing a calm and steady daily
routine. Little sister Lisa (Jacey Powers) just wants it all to go
away, but what 14 year old wouldn't? When Grammy Sue (Celia Howard)
visits, bible in hand, she gets a frightening lesson in the reality of
her son's family dynamics. One particularly violent episode sets up
Tami to imagine how life with her family might have been different
(though its set up could have been a little more clear).
75 minute production moves well under the hand of director Lori Adams,
handling all the ups and downs of a day in Josh's life. The life is at
times shocking, at time mundane, which makes it ever more real. She
draws excellent performances from her cast.
notable is Mr. Everidge, the mercurial, autistic giant among his
caretakers. His Josh is an emotional 2 year old in the body of a full
grown man, completely unfiltered and uninhibited. Ms. Murney's Tami
verges on exhaustion from the effort it takes to keep herself and her
family on track. She struggles a bit in the moments of vulnerability
but overall captures the drive to move forward.
Stark has created a realistic setting for this stressed family,
punctuated with the requisite child-friendly elements that would help
manage a child like Josh. Tristan Raine's costumes and Julie Mack's
lighting support without drawing attention to themselves.
Falling is on an open-ended run. Get tickets here.