“Repetition” by Doug DeVita; Reviewed by lead reviewer, Max Berry
Doug DeVita’s short play “Repetition” brings two longtime friends together in a very unique way. Home from law school, Barbie (played by Alex O’Shea) invites neighbor and childhood friend Phillie (Played by Christopher De Santis) over to spend some time together. The two being virgins at 25, they plan on losing their virginity with each other, despite Phillie being gay. “Repetition” is based on characters from DeVita’s “Phillie’s Trilogy” yet I did not find myself lost having not seen it. “Repetition” truly stands on its own as a delightful short play
The relationship between the two friends was really lovely to see. The history was clear in both the performances by De Santis and O’Shea as well as the writing by DeVita, a very impressive feat to achieve in such a short amount of time. There was a clear balance between giving information and revealing information that can sometimes be a tricky thing in a play so short.
Starting off strong, the play begins with the two friends listening to music and ultimately throwing themselves into a drunken dance party. At first, we aren’t quite sure what’s going on but as the scene develops, the two crawl into bed together, a condom wrapper falls to the floor, and the awkwardness of the previous moment becomes clear. Though the staging of the transition from dancing to sex felt a little awkward, in that it felt a little like actors taking their places and less like two people going to bed together, it didn’t distract from the moment or the rest of the play, which was very well done.
The play continues with the two friends dealing with the aftermath of that decision as well as discussing the various problems in their life both past and present and unfolds very naturally and honestly. De Santis and O’Shea work through these struggles beautifully and you can see the connection that DeVita no doubt spent a good time building throughout the trilogy. Ellyn Stein also gave a delightful performance as Barbie’s mother, striking a perfect balance between nosy and lovingly concerned. Overall, “Repetition” was a great way to get to know these characters and I look forward to more from them.
“Repetition” was written by Doug DeVita and directed by William Spinnato.
It features: Christopher De Santis, Alex O’Shea, and Ellyn Stein.
It performs at Secret Theatre (4402 23rd St, Long Island City, NY) 2/9 at 3PM, 2/16 at 7PM, 2/27 at 7PM.