Ravaged by the ruthless winds and waves of Hurricane Sandy, the resilient cast and crew of the Rockaway Theatre Company have returned and rebuilt! Their fall presentation is the hilarious mix of slapstick and sophistication “Boeing Boeing.” Originally presented in the 1960s, its broad farce and double entendres can still bring an audience to tears of laughter.
Basically, the story follows an American player who is living in Paris. He has implemented every unmarried guy’s fantasy. He romances three stunning women from three different countries without being caught. Once called stewardesses, they are now airline hostesses or flight attendants. Whatever we call them, they are all very easy on the eyes and very, very funny.
Catherine Leib plays German accented Gretchen. Her role is a hysterically comical caricature of a domineering Valkyrie. She hurls herself at everyone, whether man or woman. She also flings furniture and insults with equal zeal. Brava!
Kimberly Simek as shapely, Italian accented flight gal, Gabriella, is also excellent. Her contagious smile just might win Bernard’s fickle heart after all. Jessica Mintzes is capricious “noo yawk” accented airline hostess Gloria. Her character proves tougher than any male when it comes to leaving lovers in the lurch!
Unsung heroine Bertha, played by Susan Corning, is the long suffering French accented housekeeper. With shoulders drooped and a deadpan delivery, she manages to conceal her boss’ infidelities with skill.
Community favorite David Risley plays Bernard’s friend Robert. He manages to create a character that is so uncomfortable in his own skin that it actually becomes attractive to one of the women. Meanwhile, Stephen Ryan as playboy Bernard takes all the pratfalls and all the blame! Not an easy task. Never fear, love will somehow conquer all.
Directors Peggy Page and Michael Wotypka deserve enormous praise for maintaining the essence of this 1960s “bedroom farce” yet keeping it relevant for 21st century audiences. Well done.
Producer Susan Jasper has weathered RTC’s storm in every sense of the word. She has continued to keep the troupe’s supporters on board despite turbulent seas. It is a truly outstanding accomplishment.
The Rockaway Theatre Company is located at the Post Theatre at Fort Tilden. Call (718) 374-6400 or surf to www.rockawaytheatrecompany.org. Their November production is “How to Succeed in Business…” As always, save me a seat on the aisle.