“Loose Underwear” Suffers from a Loose Narrative

By Ernest Kearney — Loose Underwear has a great deal going for it not the least of which is writer/performer Dagmar Stansova.

As the daughter of Holocaust survivors who fled Communist Czechoslovakia and made her way across the American panorama; from medical school to losing a part on TV’s Married with Children for being too sexy, Stansova has stories aplenty for the telling.

And she tells them very well, punctuated by the occasional dancing interlude, again which she does very well.

There is a line in the show:

Wouldn’t it be nice if we weren’t afraid of our own fire?

A wonderful sentiment that unfortunately seems applicable to the show; Stansova takes us through moments that are personal and funny, but her narrative structure is too loose and lacks — well fire, resulting in a performance that while solid is missing a dramatic edge.

Races, pursuits and escapes are exciting. Strolls aren’t. And that’s what we’re given in Loose Underwear; a stroll.

This comes down to the journey not being given a definition. At the core, this is the tale of a young woman trying to emerge from her mother’s expectations and the darkness of her mother’s history.   But those elements have not been given focus.

Thus, all the potential impactful moments throughout the work are robbed of “impact” because the structure of the piece is denied the energy required to sharpen them, and this softness does not grip the audience.

The program credits Debra De Liso as both dramaturge and director. In the first capacity she deserves kudos, in the second less so. She has served the story but neglected the staging.Silver Medal (via The TVolution)

This makes for a pleasant night in the theater but not a memorable one.

 

A SILVER MEDAL.

 


 

Loose Underwear

played during the

Hollywood Fringe Festival 2019

for Additional Show Information

Go To:

http://hff19.org/5795

 


 

Written by

An award-winning L.A. playwright and rabble-rouser of note who has hoisted glasses with Orson Welles, been arrested on three continents and once beat up Charlie Manson. His first play, "Among the Vipers" was a semi-finalist in the Julie Harris Playwriting Competition and was featured in the Carnegie-Mellon Showcase of New Plays. It was produced at the NPT Theater in Ashland, Oregon and Los Angeles’ celebrated Odyssey Ensemble Theatre. His following play, “The Little Boy Who Loved Monsters” was produced at The Hollywood Actors Theater, where he earned praise from the Los Angeles Times for his “…inordinately creative writing.” The play went on to numerous other productions including Berlin’s The Black Theatre under the direction of Rainer Fassbinder who wrote in his program notes of Kearney, “He is a skilled playwright, but more importantly he is a dangerous one.” Ernest Kearney has worked as literary manager or as dramaturge for among others The Hudson Theater Guild, Nova Diem and the Odyssey Ensemble Theatre, where he still serves on the play selection committee. He has been the recipient of two Dramalogue Awards and a finalist or semi-finalist, three times, in the Julie Harris Playwriting Competition. His work has been performed by Michael Dunn, Sandra Tsing Loh, Jack Colvin and Billy Bob Thornton, and to date, either as playwright or director, he has upwards of a hundred and thirty productions under his belt, including a few at the Bob Baker Marionette Theater as puppeteer. After a wild and misspent youth, which lasted well into middle age, Kearney has settled down and is focusing on his writing, as well as living happily ever after with his lovely wife Marlene. Ernest’s stage reviews and social essays can be found at TheTVolution.com and workingauthor.com. Follow him on Facebook.

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