Posted // May 5,2011 -
Sam Shepard’s 1980 play about the complicated relationship between two brothers doesn’t deconstruct their knotty family ties so much as it entangles the audience within them. And so, ideally, it is staged with two quirky personalities juxtaposed in the lead roles: Philip Seymour Hoffman vs. John C. Reilly, say, or Gary Sinise vs. John Malkovich.
Locally, you couldn’t get a much quirkier juxtaposition than Jesse Peery as straitlaced screenwriter Austin vs. Lane Richins as dissipated black-sheep Lee. Peery’s vigorous stage presence (forcefully demonstrated in recent productions such as Utah Theatre Artists’ Burn This and Salt Lake Acting Company’s Six Degrees of Separation) ought to play nicely against Richins’ engaging warmth and vitality.
Other treats in store include Laurie Mecham as Mom, recently returned to the Salt Lake City stage from Portland, Ore., and Jared Greathouse as Saul Kimmer.
Wasatch Theatre Company’s True West @ Rose Wagner Center, 138 W. Broadway, 801-355-2787, May 5-21, Thursday-Saturday 8 p.m., with 2 p.m. Saturday matinees, $15. WasatchTheatre.org, ArtTix.org