Kyora Wallace, Staff Writer |
It’s officially show season again in the Fine Arts building! Mar. 9 at 7:30 PM Love/Sick, the first show of the spring semester, opened in the Hamblin theatre. I went to see it on Mar. 10, and I was not disappointed.
Love/Sick is a play written by John Cariani and published in 2016. It’s a story that explores the happiness and heartache of relationships. It follows the stories of nine different relationships on a Friday night, the only string between all of them being a Supercenter. The stories have varying degrees of seriousness and comedy, but all maintain a good balance between the two regardless.
One of the first things that stuck out to me was the set design. The set is minimal but effective. Once you walk in, you see a paint-splattered-designed floor and pieces of a broken heart hung up to appear whole. There’s also a screen that shows the title of the stories as they come on.
The name of the first scene is shown on the screen, and it starts in the Supercenter. The actors Danielle Del Orfano and David Lesinski take the stage and display an impressive talent by doing the scene almost entirely in unison. After that first scene, the audience is taken on a ride to explore the complexities of love. All the relationships have comedic elements, but more importantly, they’re relatable. The show explores situations like difficulties saying “I love you”, long-distance relationships, and many more.
The show was directed by Andrew Kahl, the professor and chair of the Theatre Department. He’s been waiting to direct the show since 2020, but due to Covid, he couldn’t. It was important to Kahl to stay true to the theme of intimacy in the show, so it was postponed. Kahl said, “I loved that the script was playful about the difficult and painful parts of courtship and love without shying away from the toughest parts of being in a romantic relationship.” In this day and age, the idea of love is heavily romanticized. We see couples on social media going on beautiful vacations and buying lavish presents. We are so used to seeing the fun parts of relationships, the hardships, and the work required to have those fun times get ignored. So much so they even may be villainized. One of the best parts of the show is that not only do you see the fun, but you also see the hardships all well.
Another important aspect of this show is how important it is to the Theatre Department. Trying to get back to theatre in a post-Covid world has its challenges. Kahl expressed some of those challenges. He mentioned that “The worst part, which was just the frustrating part, was working in masks and sustaining safety protocols that allowed us to prepare for the production on-campus.” He goes on to say that “Performing in masks creates an artificial set of boundaries for observing and responding to the work happening on stage.” However, while watching the show, you’d be surprised to know that there were any difficulties at all.
Love/Sick is a perfect mix of romantic ideas and harsh realities. Along with heartfelt performances from all the cast members. Kahl said, “If there is an inspiration or message to be delivered by the show, it is that failures in love are not catastrophic. We can get our hearts broken and keep going.” The show ends on a hopeful note. After the hardships you see on the stage, you still walk out of the theatre with a fuzzy feeling in your heart.
If you missed the first two performances, don’t panic. After the break, the show runs from the 23rd to the 26th in the Hamblin Theatre.