Moon for the Misbegotten by Eugene O’Neill
Director: Whit Wales
Producer: Frank Bartucca
Set Design: Kim Napoleone
Carpentry and Painting: Blackstone Valley Regional Vocational Technical High School
Sound Design: Robin Gabrielli
Lighting Design: Whit Wales
Josie Hogan…..Jessie Olson
Mike Hogan…..Eric McGowan
Phil Hogan…..Mark Patrick
James Tyrone, Jr…..David Anderson
Stedman Harder…..Eric McGowan
A Moon for the Misbegotten, with its finely drawn portraits of the hard-drinking, suspicious, and quick-witted Phil Hogan, his tough yet feminine and vulnerable daughter Josie, and the alcoholic failed actor Jim Tyrone, is both dark comedy and deeply touching love story.
Set in rural Connecticut near the start of the Great Depression, the play chronicles one afternoon and evening in the lives of the two misbegotten lovers Josie and Jim. Phil Hogan is an immigrant, widowed tenant farmer, and during the course of the afternoon he becomes concerned that Jim, the owner of the farm, is going to sell the farm to a rich neighbor whom Hogan despises (and also comically belittles in one fast-paced scene). Hogan’s suspicions taint the start of the night the lovers spend together, an evening which reveals as much about the chasms separating the lovers as about the desires drawing them together.
Moon for the Misbegotten
By Paul Kolas: Worcester Telegram & Gazette
October 15, 2011
“WHITINSVILLE — Eugene O’Neill’s “A Moon for the Misbegotten” is a masterpiece of confession and denied expiation, a dramatic and comedic aria . . .
It’s a heady play for a new theater group to take on, but 4th Wall Stage Company’s inaugural production was a stunning triumph of acting, directing and staging on Saturday evening, a gripping portrayal of despair and how its three main characters try to exorcize their demons in their own distinct ways . . .
Anderson is superb at playing the actor . . .
Whit Wales’ sensitive direction here results in a lovely, poignant tableau . . .
Olson plays Josie with a fine mix of defensive intimidation and vulnerability . . . She and Anderson circle around each other wonderfully with their lies and half truths . . .
Patrick’s magnificently realized Phil Hogan is a raucous, unceasingly entertaining elixir . . . He plays the “crazy old billy goat” with spectacular oration and gesture, owning Act 1 with Hogan’s consummate Irish blather. It’s a delight to watch Olson rib him with casual, heard-it-before derision. It’s a father-daughter act laced with humor and some kind of love.
Patrick and Anderson are also a potent match as the actor and the conniver sharing a bottle and second-guessing each other.
McGowan shows his versatility as both Josie’s raffish brother Mike, and the amusing dandy of a neighbor, Harder.
Set designer Kim Napoleone’s rustic, ramshackle of a farmhouse is a marvel of detail, enhanced by Wales’ crepuscular lighting.
It’s a smashing debut by 4th Wall Stage Company.”