Frank and Ava

ensemble theatre · mahoobla productions · Ages 21+ · world premiere · United States

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Review by anonymous

June 21, 2013 certified reviewer

My overall impression

For ratpack-Hollywood-in-the-‘50s geeks, this is your cuppa. Helped by the tawdry fragrance of old Hollyweird that can never be scrubbed away from the wonderful Three of Clubs bar on Vine Street where Frank and Ava is staged, the play explores the troubled love relationship and careers of Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner. Bookended by a Sinatra soundtrack the characters are soaked with booze (the sound of ice cubes clinking in the actors’ glasses was ever-present throughout the show.) Though they appropriately slur out their noir-ish dialogue, at first I was mildly irritated by what seemed rather imitative badinage and by the fact that the gorgeous Stefany Northcutt playing Ava seemed to be acting for an intimate camera and didn’t match her acting partner’s natural stage energy. Rico Simonini who played Frank acted well for the stage and often looked and sounded like Sinatra. As the play wore on it picked up and became a more than adequate vessel for interesting tidbits of movie production gossip and Hollywood political history.

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