Three agile and athletic but dim-witted clowns (Mauricio Gomez, Jeffrey Heapy and Alec Tomkiw) in whiteface and blue boots set out to tell their story. Their inept attempts to put on their costumes (Gomez zips himself in the zipper of his 16th Century pantaloons) make it clear that a sustained narrative is beyond their powers. Then a woman (Cassandra Gonzalez, alternating with Lisa Labella) arrives, bearing a sliver of plot: She has received a mysterious letter from Cardinal Richelieu that confers authority on its bearer. The three men try desperately to capture the letter, leading to a zany array of slapstick, comic chases, stage combat, pratfalls, and swordplay with imaginary swords, daggers, and eventually an imaginary blunderbuss.
The most unexpected aspect of the show is the wildly imaginative use of props. At the top of the show, the three men are snoozing on three large, crate-sized boxes, ornamented with fleurs de lys and other emblems of French royalty. In the course of the action, the boxes are transformed into cupboards, a jail cell, a row-boat, and, on one occasion, the gondola of a hot air balloon, in which the men fly aloft, ‘till Gonzalez blasts them out of the air with her imaginary gun.
The actors bring sharp comic skills and a tatterdemalion charm to the proceedings, energetically directed by Andrew Amani. The protean set-pieces are fabricated by Jeff Kleeman, and the clown coach is Alex Suha.
Bellamani Productions at The Actor’s Company, 916 N. Formosa Ave., Hlywd.;