Piece of Mind

L-R: Stephanie T Keefer (ALLIE) and Carla Valentine (GWEN)
L-R: Stephanie T Keefer (ALLIE) and Carla Valentine (GWEN) (Photo by Jonathan Harrison)

[NoHo Arts District, CA] – A NoHo Arts theatre review of Write Act Rep’s production of Piece of Mind, written by Emma Wood, directed by Susan C. Hunter, and produced by John Lant and Tamra Pica running through January 29 at Brickhouse Theatre. 

Piece of Mind is a quirky, funny tale about two long-suffering nurses and best friends opening up a rather unique new therapy business. The idea is that you and your partner spend an hour or two reflecting on your relationship…while one of you is laying in a coffin playing dead.  Sounds weird, but by the end of this play I was googling to see if this is an actual thing and wondering about gift cards for Valentine’s Day!

The cast is nearly all female. Along with a female playwright and director. Huzzah! Which is ironic when you consider just how many men you have in your life who really need therapy. Am I projecting? 

L-R: Dani Mohrbach (TESS) and Carla Valentine (GWEN) (Photo:  Susan C. Hunter)

There are dramas and complications on their first day open at this fascinating new business, but the stresses, although tough are not divisive. In the end, the turmoil creates a stronger path forward for everyone, which is a refreshing and valuable result for a play all about taking control of your destiny…a much harder thing to do than to say.

There’s a hilarious series of wildly different couples trying this radical transformative therapy with varying success that I particularly enjoyed!

L-R: Cassidy DeSantis (ELLIE) and Trevor Murphy (ED) (Photo: Susan C. Hunter)
L-R: Cassidy DeSantis (ELLIE) and Trevor Murphy (ED) (Photo: Susan C. Hunter)

The performances are lovely. Nuanced, playful, realistic and very entertaining. The Brickhouse and Write Act Rep are always surprising me with their choices, but never by their success.

This is a smart, well-written and thoughtful play about real people with dreams and dramas all their own. Piece of Mind is a simple and purposeful play with the perfect balance of charm and meaningful entertainment. It hovers delightfully between farce and heart warming comedy with a knowing wink at the dramas of life, love and family and all with an almost all female cast.

Piece of Mind is only around until the end of January, so don’t dawdle!

L-R: Roxie Lee (ROWENA) and Carla Valentine (GWEN) (Photo: Susan C. Hunter)
L-R: Roxie Lee (ROWENA) and Carla Valentine (GWEN) (Photo: Susan C. Hunter)

Cast

Stephanie T. Keefer (Allie), Carla Valentine (Gwen), Cassidy DeSantis (Ellie/Understudy Tess),   Dani Mohrbach (Tess), 

Roxie Lee (Rowena), and Trevor Murphy (Ed).

Production/Creative Team

PRODUCERS:  John Lant and Tamra Pica

BOOK: Emma Wood

DIRECTOR:  Susan C. Hunter

ASSOCIATE PRODUCER / OPERATIONS FOR WRITE ACT REP: Jonathan Harrison

PUBLICIST: Sandra Kuker-Franco at SANDRA KUKER PR

Tickets:

https://pieceofmind.bpt.me/

When:

Through January 29

Where:

Brickhouse Theatre

10950 Peach Grove Street, North Hollywood, CA 91601

Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros
Author: Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros

Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros is a Theatre and Food Writer and Filmmaker living in Los Angeles.