Don’t let the comically large nose fool you, this one is a heartbreaker. The Indiana Repertory Theatre’s minimalist production of the classic Cyrano features just three actors. It’s a quiet romance about Cyrano (Ryan Artzberger) and his unspoken love for Roxane. There are a few sword fights, coordinated by Jeb Burris who pulls double duty playing six different characters in the show. Jo Roets’ adaptation clocks in at just 1 hour and 20 minutes, with no intermission. Melisa Pereyra truly shines as Roxane. Despite the hurdles of a virtual viewing, her passion, fear, and grief radiate off the screen. Her real-life spouse, Jeb Burris, makes for a convincing partner in their scenes together. Linda Pisano's lovely work on costume design allows believability as Burris navigates between all of his roles. Russell Metheny’s set design is functional but sparse, lacking the usual detail of an IRT production. A note on the streaming experience. The show is $30 and you have a week to watch it.
In 2001 an unarmed black man was killed by a Cincinnati police officer. A peaceful protest turned dangerous in the following days as the city erupted into riots. If that sounds a bit too familiar to you, you aren’t alone. The subject matter is achingly relevant. In the midst of the chaos, a small family hunkers down in their home above their dry-cleaning business. When the son, Felix, returns home with a drunk white man in tow the tension boils over. The dialogue between the mother and her twin children feels real and quickly pulls you into their comfortable family dynamic. There were quite a few stumbles over lines in this production, which can take you out of the flow of the play, but it wasn’t too distracting. It’s only worth noting because, unlike live theatre performances, a recorded production will not change from night to night. Truths are revealed as the riots rage on and important issues are addressed. Hearing about the black experience, the unavoidable hurdles they face in