By William Mastrosimone
The Regional Premiere, with new material from the playwright
Directed by Mel Day
Starring (in order of appearance): Sara Marsh* (Sunshine), Tony Sarnicki (Robby), and Nels Lennes (Nelson)
Presented at Artspace’s Grain Belt Warehouse
Photos: Melissa Hesse
"A gritty and darkly funny one-act play...with acting that delves into the psychological gnarliness of the situation. Lennes, a co-founder of HUGE Theater, is a big, burly fellow who could clearly swing his weight around. But he seems restrained, even gentle...It is Sunshine, played by a petite performer [Marsh] who punches way above her weight, who gives a sense of menace...imagine Lady Macbeth as a working girl, struggling to find a way to get her soul some nourishing light."
— Rohan Preston, Star Tribune
"This production is a gift for audiences willing to embark on a riveting emotional ride...This is the third year in a row that Dark & Stormy has offered audiences a well-made and deeply engrossing December show. It's a Christmas gift I'll gladly take — and so should you."
— Ed Huyck, City Pages
"Sara Marsh is terrific as Sunshine, a part that could have been written for her talents. She is by turns sexy, wound-up, funny and smart, and projects a vulnerability that cloaks an inner strength that has enabled her to survive a life of hard knocks. Nels Lennes as Nelson...makes visible his increasing hurt and vulnerability. Tony Sarnicki makes a palpable leap from innocence to obsession. [Director] Mel Day has created a synergy between these characters that bring meaning beyond the words they utter. Lisa Jones' costumes are spot on, and Mary Shabatura's sound and light designs bring further connections to the reality of Nelson and Sunshine's lives. Dark & Stormy deserves credit for mounting this little known play, and bringing it to the public eye." - Arthur Dorman, Talkin' Broadway
"Sara Marsh's Sunshine is splendidly volatile and heartrending. Nels Lennes as Nelson is perfectly intimidating and closed off, but when he sees his judgmental overkill he seems to shift consciousness. This pair is a joy to behold. Tony Sarnicki adds compelling layers...This is a production that raises pertinent questions about the power of sex and desire." — John Townsend, Lavender Magazine
"Dark & Stormy has done an amazing job with this production. All three cast members make bold choices. For Sara Marsh, as Sunshine, it is in her unwavering Rhode Island accent and ability to move quickly between states of being: from nervous activity to confident mind-games to moments of true vulnerability. As Nelson, Nels Lennes delivers a totally compelling performance...as Nelson finally allows Sunshine into his apartment, his curmudgeonly acceptance of her presence feels absolutely believable. Finally, Tony Sarnicki's character moves from the initial naivety of a young college student to the boiling rage of a spurned and obsessive lover...three all-around excellent performances in a tight 90-minute show. Dark & Stormy is a company to watch.” — Sophie Kerman, Minnesota Playlist
*Member, Actors’ Equity Association