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The Mystery of Love and Sex: an on-point way to close 2016

Diversionary Theatre explores one of life’s great mysteries with a magnificently staged play

By Alejandra Enciso

Proudly, San Diego is one of the cities in the United States that has a great, constant and strong theatre presence.

Important pieces are staged and playwrights are featured year after year. And, as with everything, there are corresponding areas of opportunity.

The Mystery of Love and Sex by Bathsheba Doran is no exception. A clean, round, very well written piece.

Directed by Diversionary Theatre’s Executive Artistic Director, Matt M. Morrow …Love and Sex, I consider, is one of the best productions in 2016. A story that touches upon relationships, family, love, sexuality and, owning one’s sexuality. Regardless of the stage in life you –faithful reader– are currently in, you will identify with this piece. Whether still in college, early career, or having a midlife crisis, it does not matter. Doran brings a play with heart and Morrow captures that essence delicately and at its organic pace.

Charlotte (Rachael VanWormer) and Jonny (John W. Wells III) are childhood friends/neighbors who decide to go to the same college and live in the same dorm. Knowing each other for more than a decade, what secrets could there be?…right?  Well, when graduation approaches, so do the hidden demons. Charlotte’s parents Lucinda (Marci Anne Wuebben), dedicated to her home and Howard (Mike Sears) a mystery novel author, want nothing better for Charlotte and off course Jimmy. The demons spread wider and also hit the parental unit, bringing out affairs, racism and bigotry. Love is indeed a mystery that when somewhat understood or somewhat grasped is fragile. It easily can get lost or overshadowed. We see different stages in Charlotte and Jimmy’s young adulthood and understand that when there is love, it will come through no matter the obstacles.

Marci Anne Wuebben is phenomenal. Lucinda is quirky and irreverent (snap, snap, snap, snap). Mike Sears as Howard, is stoic and strict in a very elegant way. Rachael and John are just…delicious, portraying two very layered roles, with unveilings that were fantastic. From time to time, I perceived Rachael to be too intense, maybe in order to portray a young college girl more convincingly (my perception). I did not find it necessary though. Sean Fanning’s scenic design is magical. From the kids’ dorm to Rachael’s back yard, tire hanging from a tree and all.

This piece is a wonderful, on-point way to close 2016 for Diversionary Theatre. Illustrating their mission and, reminding the audience the importance and complexities of both love and sex. As I mentioned in the beginning, I consider it to be one of the best pieces this year. The show is a little over two hours long but with continuous changes in wardrobe, set, lighting, and music. Great team work from Bonnie Durben (Property Master), Karin Filijan (Lighting Designer), Blair Nelson (Composer/Sound Designer), Elisa Benzoni (Costume Design) and Taylor Todd (Stage Manager).

Do yourself a favor, grab your partner, mom, dad, bestie and go see The Mystery of Love and Sex, playing Thursday until Saturday December 24th. Tickets start at $15 dollars and can be purchased HERE.

Next Act……………………………Thursday, December 22nd at 6pm (7pm show)

Next Act is your opportunity to mix and mingle with the stars of the upcoming shows in the Kron Repertory: 2.5 MINUTE RIDE and WELL! They’ll be available to answer questions about the production, and you’ll benefit from complimentary appetizers! Starting at 6pm before the 7pm show.

Vanguard Culture

Vanguard Culture is an online media entity designed for culturally savvy, socially conscious individuals. We provide original interviews and reviews of the people, places, and events that make up San Diego’s thriving arts and culture community, as well as curated snapshots of the week’s best, most inspiring and unique cultural and culinary events. We believe in making a difference in the world, supporting San Diego’s vibrant visual and performing arts community and bringing awareness to important social and community causes.