Truly an outstanding show, the Theater West production of Neil Simon’s The Odd Couple was a great way to end the week. The play’s classic comedy balanced a compelling story of moving on past tough times with hilarious entertainment. Simon’s ability to create vivacious and relatable characters shows throughout the text and gives this work a sort of familiarity with the audience that can touch the viewer in a very personal way.
The show starred sophomore Daniel Rudin as the messy Oscar Madison and senior Greg Georges as his neat-freak roommate, Felix Ungar. Both actors gave impressive performances that made this author forget this was a high school play. Supporting actors Chris Knieste, Jesse Seville, Alek Douglas, and Sean McPhillips added to the production with their witty interpretations of the couple’s poker mates; Emily Orlando and Brianna Robinson (Amanda Davis and Tara Ranjbar in Thursday night’s show) played the charming Pigeon sisters.
Not only were the actors outstanding, but set design and production were tasteful, artful, and most of all, supportive of the mood of the play. The students, headed by Mrs. Gail Giella, created an atmosphere that helped bring this production to the next level. This author has never seen a more professional high school production with such care for detail.
Based on the success of the fall production, all should go see the next Theater West production when the spring musical comes to stage.