Coffee, Tea, and Gin

self-produced · Ages 13+ · United States of America

Content Warning one person show world premiere
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June 22, 2023 certified reviewer
tagged as: Corpse · Candles · abstract · insanity · Lovecraft

What I liked

Im a sucker for Lovecraftian horror (Annihilation, Control, Magnus Archives etc) so this play was at the top of my list to check out. This performance had a lot to enjoy, but what really thrilled me was how “modern” it felt. Casey draws an interesting parallel between JK Rowling and Lovecraft in a way that makes perfect sense. And I felt the emotion behind wanting to kill the author while still appreciating their work. How someone’s books made you feel safe and less alone: only to find out that they themselves would hate your guts for no reason. Another interesting thing I enjoyed about this play was really the way the abstract was portrayed. If anything I wish those parts were longer. This was a quick show, but it does slowly buildup to a huge crescendo that makes your jaw hit the floor. The possession bit at the end was really cool and exactly up my alley. Casey’s acting and the erratic lighting really sold the performance. Overall I wish I could’ve watched that last bit just for a little bit longer because this was such a great performance.

What I didn't like

When talking about how terrible of a person Lovecraft was, its very easy to get a laugh. I really enjoyed Casey tearing him apart because rightfully so, I enjoy making fun of terrible people. However there was a section where he brings up his cat that just went a little bit too far for me. For fans of Lovecraft, its a very popular meme at this point what he named his cat (Google it). But that scene got a little too…Quentin Tarantino for me. Him ripping apart Lovecraft was hilarious, I would just tell people to google his cat’s name is all.

Also, somebody else in the reviews mentioned this, but the sound was a bit hard to follow. I was sitting in the back corner and I found it a lil hard to follow the dialogue being said. Both by Casey and the audio recordings. That is to say, this is definitely a play you wanna sit front row at. Actually I WISH I sat front row for this play because there was alot going on that i really wish I could’ve been front row for. But I guess that just means I have to see it a 2nd time.

No real critiques overall.

My overall impression

This was the most literal definition of insanity. Casey is a phenomenal actor and I truly appreciate the multiple facets he was trying to cover in this performance. I really enjoyed the bridge he was building between Lovecraft and JK Rowling. This was an interesting play about separating the art from the artist. But where the performance really shines is in the abstract concepts. I enjoyed the use of lighting and Casey’s ability to metamorphize himself into that which cannot be named. I liked how the abstract took hold of Casey and I enjoyed the way in which it was portrayed. By the end I felt like I was watching a puppet. Something that looked just human enough to be convincing but only from far away. Phenomenal performance over all.

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