CIGARETTES AND CHOCOLATE & HANGUP

Pacific Resident Theatre
Venice

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Critics LemonMeter

100%

In Cigarettes and Chocolate, this brilliant writer (The English Patient, Truly, Madly, Deeply), takes a humorous and human look at London life in the 1980’s that tests the social responsibilities of urbanites, who as Minghella said, quoting Oscar Wilde, “know the price of everything and the value of nothing.” Coupled with Hang Up, this is a stunning evening of two rarely performed works originally written to be performed on radio.

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"Placing the emphasis on a playwright’s words and a cast’s gifts at bringing them to life, the latest from Pacific Resident Theatre proves an unexpected—and entirely unique—dramatic treat."

"No-frills production values notwithstanding, Peretzian and his first-rate ensemble of Pacific Resident company veterans render Minghella’s precisely inflected dialogue with polished authority — particularly when it comes to the failures of communication that figure prominently in both pieces."

"Under Peretzian’s direction, the performances are evocative, clear, simple, and moving. British accents, from these American actors, are thoroughly convincing. Rebecca Kessin’s sound design adds restaurant clinks and nearby trains, helping the audience picture each setting."

"Director Michael Peretzian’s job here is fairly uncomplicated since the cast is certainly talented, can glance at the script if necessary, their British accents pass muster and nobody has to worry about bumping into the furniture."

"Award-winning director Michael Peretzian has his hands full making a very wordy radio play (despite the issue of silence) into a stage production. Luckily, he has a fine cast of experienced and talented members who breathe life into the proceedings. In addition, he is working from a script by a playwright whose particular strength is in dialog, an author who is able to blend real-life verbal meanderings with pauses, fill-ins, and the occasional flashes of insight – reached almost casually."

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