a feminine ending – Stuart Rogers’ Studios

“a feminine ending” now playing at the Stuart Rogers’ Studios through December 4, 2017.

A new production of the well-received and loved New York play “a feminine ending” opened at the Stuart Rogers’ Studios in the NoHo Arts District.

It is a story of a young and semi-successful woman in her mid-twenties that faces a crisis of self-doubt, insecurity and uncomfortable relationships. It is full of wit and comedic moments and is well suited for a small theatre such as this one.

As it begins, we see Amanda enter and stand in the middle of a sparse stage. She is an attractive young woman, played by Pilar Holland. She talks directly to the audience and announces she is an artist, an oboist. It is with conviction and warmth. She is also an inspiring composer who realizes that often uncontrollable choices are made that may affect her in unforeseen ways. She lets us know that her career passion was never really a choice. Nor did she see that it would be determined and affected by so many men. From father to lover to a past boyfriend, she came to understand that her needs and wants would have to wait a little longer, if ever.

We follow Amanda’s journey of becoming happily lost in the infatuation of ‘landing’ a good looking guy. He is sexy, charming, and has the voice of an angel. Many others would have wanted him, but she got him. As time progresses in their small New York apartment, she rationalizes that her goals can wait; life is to support your guy, then you will have your turn. Jack (Micah Parker), is a rising star and doesn’t understand the ramifications his path will have on him or her. He has an opportunity that can’t be missed. Amanda agrees and, despite a respectably sized ring on her hand,  chooses to take a painful step into the past. Needless to say, it doesn’t work and she is left wondering about her own desires and needs. Sacrifices have to be made and, unlike her mother, she knows that she will return to her dreams when things settle down.

There are many avenues of stories in this production. Amanda’s mother (Deborah Kleinman) is tightly woven and is not easily understood by the audience or her onstage husband. Well done by Ms Kleinman. Is she crazy, neurotic or just acting out because she hates her daughter’s boyfriend? She is also an artist and understands the angst and hostility of having to have dreams deferred. Jack is not a bad guy, just locked in. He is the handsome and sexy fiancé who is caught in a web of managers and producers itching to take him to the heights. Then what about the high school fling that might help Amanda find normalcy in a chaotic world? All of them cannot hide or change the truths of this male-dominated world full of gifts that are not shared with the feminine half. Amanda must come to terms with all of it. 

The acting is fine and they all do a respectable job. The exception to this rule is the lead actress Pilar Holland. She stands out with a role of lengthy dialogue peppered with conflict and comedic moments. She handles it with class and instinctively seems to know how to react. It was not an easy part. Like Jack, the other male characters in this play seem to float through life ignorant of the pain, oppression and uncertainty women experience every day. Micah portrays this sexy dreamer as a guy who is not really a bad person, just torn between a rising career and her. The high school fling Billy (Brandon Irons) was the most believable male character in this production. He’s a guy who is simple, not simple-minded. His timing with the goofy part of his character was really good. Her father (Kevin Fry-Bowers) had too small of a role and I would have liked to have seen more of this character. All in all, everyone did a really fine job.

Tyler Seiple did a great job of directing this multi-faceted play. This production does provoke reflection and understanding of the differences and confusion of modern life for women. He had to capture much emotion and movement with little room in this dark space. Not an easy task. He is also the producer along with Stephanie Lesh-Farrell of this show. Yes, go see this one and make sure that you come with friends as it will invoke a lot of after-show discussion and smiles.

“a feminine ending”
October 20-December 4th, 2017.
Fridays & Saturdays 8:00 PM.

Stuart Rogers’ Studios
5267 Lankershim Blvd.
NoHo, 91601

(818) 763-3232

An SRS Production.


Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros
Author: Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros

Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros is a British writer and filmmaker living In Los Angeles.