|You Are Perfect
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NEWS AND REVIEWS
Performing at The Actors Company theatre is Cyndy A. Marion’s YOU ARE PERFECT, a surreal tale that speaks for the past action, the present situation, and the fate of Susan Atkins, one of the followers of the inner cult lead by Charles Manson.
The setting opens within the prison cell of Susan Atkins (Lindsay Danielle Gitter). She was part of a grouping that was lead by a young and eager man on a mission, Charles Manson. (Michael Wiener). Susan has a visitor in her cell, a middle aged woman (Kristin Samuelson) who is present to assist on guiding her upon what she did that got her inside. Susan takes upon this woman that desires to help, although what she did for “Charlie” was part of something that would be of a change, even if that change involved a detailed emotional passion with the aid of hallucinogens. As The Woman speaks to her, Susan sees Charlie as a man the held his plans for himself and his group of believers to do what was supposed to be carried out. Susan shifts between the visions of Charles, as well as why The Woman is there at her side. Susan learns that The Woman shares a fate that Susan will encounter, perhaps as the two may be of one.
This tight single-act play written and directed by Cyndy A. Marion takes its basis on an actual episode that occurred in Los Angeles almost fifty years ago, during the era where the so-called youthful lifestyle of California included sex, drugs, and rock ‘n roll–with a hideous twist. In this show, the three performers play their roles in different dimensions. Lindsay Danielle Gitter as Susan Atkins is a free spirited young woman that may not necessarily fully comprehend on what she did for her leader, although she doesn’t fully admit guild, let alone any other actions. Michael Wiener as Charles Manson is a man that is firmly ground on his undertaking that seeks an eerie blend of revenge and a revolution, based upon the musical “messages” found within the lyrics of The Beatles’ “White Album”. Kristin Samuelson as The Woman (she doesn’t hold a character name) is president first as an aid, developing into a stern near mother-esque personality, finally morphing into Susan’s later being. (Herself?) These trio of performers presents a time and era where the notion of a free sprit can make a difference, for their better of for its worst.
What makes this presentation appealing is its visuals. Ruth Albertyn provides the set and projection design. The physical sets only consists of a folding chair, a table at its stage left side, a folding cot, and a lone toilet. This represents Susan’s only world for the moment. On the back wall projected is moving imagery that represents Charlie’s inner mind and thoughts, as well as the places that Susan, along her her fellow cult members, are upon with their mission. There isn’t anything graphic displayed. Anything graphic are only seen within the eye of the beholder–the audience.
The timing for this show exists is a perfect circle. One year from now (August), will mark the fiftieth anniversary of the life and times of a failed musician turned cult leader who carried on a act that would revolutionize a belief. Although this review won’t get into the details on that episode, this play speaks for that time and era. Granted, a bit of creative license was added for story and plotting purposes. One question remains? Will something of this magnitude ever repeat itself? If it does, then modern technology (and social media applications) will take on a bigger part. Charlie told Susan the title compliment, and that same complement speaks for this stage performance.
YOU ARE PERFECT, presented by White Horse Theater Company, and performs at the Actors Company Other Space Theater, 916 North Formosa Avenue, one block south of Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles (West Hollywood adjacent) until August 10th. Showtimes are Wednesday through Saturday nights at 8:00 PM, and Sunday matinee at 3:00 PM. For ticket reservations, call (323) 960-5521, or online at http://www.Plays411.com/Perfect
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