Written by Steve Nevil
Directed by Elayne Heilveil
Welcome to Heretofore must be on your Fringe list. It might be its world premiere but this is a play you will see produced time and time again…it’s just that brilliant.
Set in the long forgotten Wild West town of Heretofore, somewhere on the endless road to nowhere, long years past the fever of the gold rush and well sidestepped by the railroad, our anti-heroes Mr. Barker and his neighbor Sno idle away their days, caught up in a cycle of repetitive and unrelenting dependancy. Mr Barker is blind and while he begrudgingly relies on Sno for his every need, and Sno, in turn, resents his treatment from his surly friend, they each bear a deep fondness for each other, although they find it much too hard to admit.
This is where we find them. Barker sits in his chair ‘barking’ orders at Sno. Sno is a far gentler soul, determining his own existence around the loyalty he feels and the hopes Barker instills in him that the railroad will one day come to Heretofore and release them both from their self-imposed exile from the world.
It doesn’t sound funny…but actually, it is, very, very funny.
Funny in the kind of way that "Waiting for Godot" is funny, or "Endgame," by which the play is inspired. It's a sort of hapless, wistful humor, gloriously exposing the ridiculousness of our clumsy connections to each other. How we have turned wasting time into an art form, fear to keep us from everything we desire, even truth.
There is happily an escape for Sno, when the luminous and feisty Fix arrives after “taking the wrong turn somewhere” on her way to her fiancé, who she has never met. A woman alone risking everything to reach happiness and with a fearlessness that quickly bewitches Sno and irritates Barker, in equal proportions.
I will leave you to discover the poetic conclusion of the play yourselves, suffice it to say that you will not be disappointed or dry eyed.
"Welcome to Heretofore" is a play that gently yet firmly reminds us to pay attention to those idle moments lest they overtake our lives entirely. Waiting for something to arrive is surely the most frustrating way to pass your days, and in Heretofore it has become the only way. Mr Barker, with his slight seniority on Sno and his aching to be loved, well hidden beneath his gruff exterior, is, in the end, far more than we give him credit for. It’s a lovely ending to a gorgeous play and exquisitely cast and performed in the simplest and most effective of ways. In short…I loved it.
Beautifully written with pathos, humor and love and directed deftly and with great respect to the words and the actors, writer Steve Nevil and director Elayne Heilveil are the perfect match.
Starring Leslie Caveny, Doug Haverty, and Steve Nevil.
Read the reviews>>
SAT 6/3 @ Noon (Preview available to the public)
THURS 6/8 @ 5pm (Opening)
SAT 6/10 @ 5pm
WED 6/14 @ 5pm
MON 6/19 @ 8pm
FRI 6/23 @ 5pm
Running time: 45 minutes
All seats $12
Buy tickets: plays411.com/heretofore or http://hff17.com/4510
Hudson Guild Theatre
6539 Santa Monica Blvd.
Los Angeles 90038