Little Wars, What Was Lost and Shades Of Blue, Der Kanarienvogel, 28 Marchant Avenue and Neat & Tidy are five plays that have been playing in repertory by playwright Steven Carl McCasland in a month-long festival. Steven’s characters include a legendary jazz singer, an unforgettable playwright, a President, the world’s most famous mystery writer and more. From plays featuring Agatha Christie and Gertrude Stein to Billie Holiday and Joe Glaser, Steven’s plays if they are anything like Little Wars, which is the play I attend, are well written, mesmerizing and thought provoking. Steven Carl McCasland is also the Founding Artistic Director of Beautiful Soup Theater.
Stein and Toklas were Jewish, lesbians in a world gone mad and unaccepting. The most touching part of the whole show is the revelation of the housekeeper Bernadette. It seems Gertrude and Alice rescue Bernadette who was gang raped by six Nazis and a gun.
Cara Picone directs this piece with sensitivity but it is Steven Carl McCasland, who is the one to watch here. His words are profound and his monologues are a must for any actress who wants a concise piece to sink their teeth into. It is surprising for a man to write such wonderful work for women.
There are two more chances to see Mr. McCasland’s work.
5/31: 2pm 28 Marchant Avenue: The Kennedy Family’s Hyannisport compound. Examining five summers in the family’s lives, the play focuses on the lobotomy of Rose Marie Kennedy. Spend each fading summer with John, Joe, Eunice, Kathleen, Bobby, Pat, Rose, Joseph and Rosemary as the family grapples with their skeletons.
5/31: 7pm What Was Lost: Brings the beloved stage actress Laurette Taylor return to the stage after a six-year hiatus. Chronicling her process from the first rehearsal of Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie through her legendary first performance as Amanda Wingfield, What Was Lost is a piercing look at the lies we tell ourselves in order to survive. Pennylynn White returns as Laurette Taylor with Paul Thomas Ryan as Tennessee Williams. They are joined by the entire original company and creative team.
Clarion Theatre, 309 East 26th St.