Table Manners
The Dining Room
Review by Ross Anthony

What a pleasure! This simple static set (an antique table and chairs) makes for a great pedestal upon which a dynamic cast brings to life a smart script with spot-on pace.

The play sets out to paint a portrait of an upper-middle class America in its prime (a few miscellaneous decades in the 20th century). Conversations and the actors to voice them slip into the dining room like breezes through window curtains, sit for a time, maybe share a meal, then wisp out like the ghosts of family past. As vignettes, they overlap eerily, then hand off the table warmly, but unknowingly to the next set of relatives and lovers to tell its own story, and paint some more of the portrait of an American time. Absolutely elegantly blocked.

I highly recommend it! Engaging from beginning to end, my only complaint is that I wanted it to go on longer. The Promenade Playhouse has a cozy, intimate atmosphere. The seating is comfortable and pleasantly pitched for a good view. Of course, the Third Street Promenade makes for great pre (or post) play entertainment. Just down the block, the Monsoon Restaurant makes tasty Hamachi Hoppers.

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  • The Dining Room. Copyright © 2012.
  • Review based on the Saturday January 28th performance at the Promenade Playhouse, Santa Monica, California. Written by A.R. Gurney. Directed by Natalia Lazarus. Cast: Paul Magaletta, Edgardo Gonzalez, Ryan Boone, Rose Desena, Zahra Zaveri, Clyde Ft Small, Hayley Brown, Kraig Dane, Catherine Curtis, Oriko Ikeda, Danette Garrelts, Tom Malee.

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Copyright © 1998-2022 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: or call 1-800-767-7186. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.

Last Modified: Tuesday, 17-Jul-2012 10:27:05 PDT