Southwest Shakespeare's She Stoops to Conquer in Mesa Is Tedious and Good-Looking -- Think Richard Gere's Private Life
|Spencer Dooley and Justine Hartley navigate the rutted road of courtship in She Stoops to Conquer.|
Spencer Dooley was genuinely amusing as Kate's suitor, young Marlow, who is a conceited snot-rag. He's also supposed to be full of desirable virtues, shy around upper-class women, and friendly, flirtatious, and talkative with working-class women. That latter dichotomy is particularly hard to present as anything other than a massive and unpleasant personality flaw, and in general young Marlowe simply has far to0 much to carry in the storyline, so the cognitive dissonance Dooley induces might not be his fault.
The set and costumes are elegant, fun, and functional. Very. Jeff Thompson and Maci Hosler, respectively, designed them.
The verdict: Sadly, this production of She Stoops to Conquer is an example of the type of classical theater that keeps people away from classical theater. And it's unfortunate that the company that's producing it is the only professional full-time classical company in town and is struggling to stay in business, because this show, if considered in a vacuum, ought not convince anyone to help Southwest Shakespeare.
She Stoops to Conquer continues through Saturday, April 27, at Mesa Arts Center, One East Main Street. Admission is $12.50 to $33.50 -- purchase tickets here or call 480-644-6500.