By James McLindon; Directed by Shaun Peknic
Produced by Nylon Fusion Theatre Company
Play, World Premiere
Ran through 10.24.15
The New Ohio Theatre, 154 Christopher Street
by Mateus Ciucci Ferreira on 10.28.15
Meghan St. Thomas and Josh Marcantel in Comes a Faery.
BOTTOM LINE: A haunting tale of hope, self-doubt and reconnecting with family.
Lights up. We see a huge book opened, a toy-truck, a doll, some cubes, a couch and a desk with a phone. Enters Siobhan (Meghan St. Thomas), an eight year old girl, who pretend-fixes the truck before the knuckleheads get to her. Forced to live with her aunt Katie (Michaela Reggio) because her mother, a truck mechanic in the Army, has been called to active duty, Siobhan, a precocious and inventive young girl feeds off of a book on Irish Folklore and the expectation of receiving a phone call from her mother. Meanwhile, Katie struggles between suddenly being a parent and trying to figure out her relationship with her boyfriend and artist/misunderstood genius-wannabe Raphael (Benjamin Miller). The longer Siobhan goes without hearing from her mom, the graver her agony gets. Deepened by Seaneen (Josh Marcantel), a peevish 8,000 year old Irish fairy, her state becomes so worrisome that she's taken to Dr. Neery (Lori Kee). With an ever-escalating erratic behavior and, consequently, tension, all embark on a journey trying to overcome their personal and collective doubts.
Told mainly through the perspective of Siobhan, Comes A Faery presents us with a tale that inhabits both the adult's and the child's world or, conversely, a real and a fantastical realm. It is a tale about finding oneself through adversity, about surviving internal wars while standing strong on the outside. St. Thomas's portrayal is a convincing one, even if at times it stuck the same angry tone. The inner struggles of a child that perceives itself as abandoned or unworthy of love creates the hook on which Seaneen hangs his heavy friendship. Marcantel's performance was the most consistent, nuanced and rewarding of the entire ensemble and, even though not an expert in Irish accents myself, his seemed to remain coherent throughout the show. With an expressive body and powerful eyes, Marcantel owned the stage and made it all worth-a-while. Miller's portrayal of the common artist that clings to a potential dormant geniality was endearing and won me over through the well acted infant-like heart that was worn up his sleeve from minute one.
Although not without its long moments or inconsistencies, Comes A Faery should be praised for its intelligent play on the possibility of the fantastic inhabiting our lives beyond our ability to notice or understand it. Even if the Irish fairy can be read as the personification of the child's inner destructive impulses for those keen on applying psychoanalytical principles to misbehaving individuals with no apparent cause, the balance created in the play does allow for a less scientific reading, so to speak. The direction of the show was by Shaun Peknic, and aside from all the good exploration of space and the effective blocking, some magical moments were also achieved, especially those when both worlds collided on stage.
Comes a Faery is an engaging play that analyzes themes that are recurrent in our lives and gives them a twist by allowing a child's inventiveness and the 'what if?' of fantasy to shine through on stage.
(Comes a Faery played at the New Ohio Theater, 154 Christopher Street, through October 24, 2015.)
Comes a Faery, by James McLindon, was directed by Shaun Peknic. It was produced by Nylon Fusion Theatre Company. Costume design by Debbi Hobson, lighting design by Willburn Bonnell, set design by Kyu Shin, sound design by Andy Evan Cohen.