Review On The Solid Life of Sugar Water

Leigh Kennicott

Registered Critic

The Solid Life of Sugar Water, written by Jack Thorne, follows a couple as they negotiate the waters of trauma due to the stillbirth of their child. Randee Trabitz, who directs with sensitivity, has brought the play to life against an aerial view of the marriage bed as a backdrop. The projections —the bed; life size reproductions of the actors — elevate Deaf West’s production beyond more modest aspirations, with Tad Cooley as Phil and Sandra Mae Frank as Alice, drifting in and out of the evolving scenes, punctuated by front–of–stage interactions with their speaking counterparts (Nick Apostolina as Phil and Natalie Camunas as Alice), who also portray other characters as necessary.

This image of a couple in crisis ends in an explosive confluence of events so emotionally fraught that, on the night I attended, the action sent at least audience member from the room. Make no mistake, this production is an extraordinary achievement

Leigh Kennicott has an extensive background in theatre, film and television and a Ph.D. degree in Theatre, awarded in 2002. A writer, director and actor, Leigh Kennicott began theatrical reviewing at Backstage, followed by Pasadena Weekly and Stage Happenings blog.
As a director in Los Angeles, she directed a neo-realist "Romeo and Juliet" at the Secret Rose Theatre; a new play,“Charlotte Second Chance,” at DramaGarage; and “How I Learned to Drive,” “Nickel and Dimed” and “Top Girls” all at College of the Canyons.
Presently, she teaches theatre topics at California State University, Northridge.