Reviewed by David Kashimba
Photo by Jeff Thomas

Actors Theatre of Santa Rosa has once again launched its festival of short new plays. “This year’s Quickies is part of our sixth annual New Works Festival and the second year that we’ve featured short-format plays,” said Quickies production coordinator, Danielle Cain. “Playwrights from all over the country submitted plays, 15 minutes and under, to be considered for production. Some of the playwrights are established and some are just starting out. This year’s 11 playwrights have had many plays produced.”

Of the hundreds of plays submitted this year, the 11 plays selected are varied on alternate nights with at least five of the plays performed each night. Many of the plays are comic and all show a tremendous amount of imagination.

The Life Manual, written by Ken Slattery, has a very ordinary guy walk into the corporate offices of a large company and demand that he wants a new life. He complains that the one they gave him just isn’t working out the way it was suppose to.

In Aimee, written by Erin Blackwell, a woman’s apartment is invaded by Homeland Security agents who accuse her of conspiring with the French because she has a collection of love letters using French words, and her name is French for beloved. In this take on the old adage, “make love not war,” love wins the day along with a lot of laughter.

The final selection for either performance night is Swan Lake Calhoun, written by Yehuda Hyman and directed by Joe Winkler. It opens with two guys fishing and a big fish pulls one in. Sure that he’s going to drown, he prays that he may live in order to experience love. A silly goose with a Russian accent finds him and revives him with a kiss. The rest is pure comedy and imagination as the goose tries to convince him that she’s a swan and love takes off on wings of laughter.

For tickets or more information call (707) 523-4185 or visit www.actorstheatre.com.

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