We really were not sure what to expect. With a title like ‘Sex With Strangers,’ one has to wonder what one is about to encounter. What we did encounter was a two-hour play with a fifteen-minute intermission that was well written, well scripted, and well acted. The telling point to me is that you hear people after the play discussing various points because it was interesting and thought provoking.
Act I takes place at a Bed and Breakfast in rural Michigan and Act II takes place at an apartment in Chicago. There are two actors: Olivia and Ethan. They are both writers, writers who have taken different paths to where they currently are and who are also at different points of the success spectrum.
Ethan is the ‘Technology’ person, using everything social networking has to offer, moving ahead seemingly despite whatever the personal costs might be. Olivia has the ‘Old School’ take on movement toward success, She has Technology, but it is older and she sees the climb to literary success in a very traditional way, yet is seemingly less than happy with the fact that she has not yet gotten further.
In the end, I find that Mr. Technology represented more than just that; he represented youth of a certain generation with great confidence, a person to whom any question will get answered with, “Of course I can do that!” Olivia teaches English to survive and despite having written more than one novel, she is fearful of having others even read them, overburdened with constant self-doubts.
The two different parties connect and clash and I find the clash to be way more than just the issue of method and Technology but also of personality and that universality makes the play all the more real and effective in involving the theatre participant.
There was not one dull moment in this play by Laura Eason (from Evanston) that allows one to doze. The director, Scott Westerman, is also from Evanston.
The set was simple and perfect for the play and the actors were impeccable. Olivia was played by Nina O’Keefe and Ethan by Rich Holton. This is a must see. To think that it was put forth on a small stage in a space that has no bad seats, and right in our own back yard of Lake Forest, Illinois. It plays until March 4th, don’t miss it.