By Holli Harms
The extraordinary experience of falling in love is magical, complicated, and often scary as all get out. The task of recreating the falling in words, images, and stories is not an easy web to weave. Writer and director Kotryna Gesait has taken on the beautiful enterprise of telling our stories of falling in four deftly spun vignettes, tightly woven with humor, clumsy awkwardness, longing, personal pain, and a deep perspective of one of the most important aspects of being alive.
In her play Cocoon, Gesait tells four stories, of how the misdirections and timing of life sometimes cause one to fall alone, how there is the complicated scary falling that unwinds and unwinds and unwinds leaving nothing but air, or the falling twice because time and change ask for the strength of acceptance, and the falling that is clumsy, funny, awkward head butting, head rubbing, falling that we stick with and discover a deeper truth within ourselves. Falling in love is that moment in our lives we all remember and want to cling to forever. That falling is floating on clouds and once you’ve floated, you never forget that feeling.
Love as your plot is tricky and can become quickly a schmaltzy yawn, but not in Gesait’s hands. Her words ring true, filled with substance and life. And in her actor’s mouths and bodies, her words become life itself. An actor, in order to connect with an audience, has to not only create a character but bring all of themselves in order to elicit truth. The performers you believe are the individuals and not actors creating individuals. The evening is ushered in by Helen Farmer with that difficult of love – unrequited, and there is the lyrical work of Jud Meyers, the hilarious perplexing vaudevillian performances of Erin Margaret Pettigrew and Melinda Nanovsky, and the confusing youthful fear-laden work of Alannah Allen and Ryan Ward create a wonderfully truthful evening that will connect you with your personal falling.
It is 90 minutes of us, of the deep down don’t show to the world us. It’s not to be missed.
Cocoon written and directed by Kotryna Gesait has its US premiere at The Gene Frankel Theatre
The cast of Cocoon features Alanah Allen, Helen Farmer, Jud Meyers*, Melinda Nanovsky, Erin Margaret Pettigrew*, and Ryan Ward*. *These Actors are appearing courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association.
Kotryna Gesait (Director/Playwright)
Creative Team: Set Design by Chantal Marks, Sound Design by Nadav Rayman, Lighting Design is by Heather Crocker, and the Movement/Intimacy Coordinator is Caitlin Rigney. Thomas DellaMonica is the Assistant Director, and The Production Stage Manager is Annika Prager.
Cocoon, an interactive new play written and directed by Kotryna Gesait, will make its U.S. debut November 16th – December 10th at The Gene Frankel Theatre, 24 Bond Street
Tickets are $20-40 and can be purchased at: www.cocoonplay.com
Performances are Wed Nov 16- Sat Dec 10th. There are 16 performances in total. The running time is 90 minutes.