Featuring an excellent cast of actors, playwright Molly Moroney’s new play, Kithless In Paradise, is absolutely fantastic. In the first act, we meet a group of six long-time friends, several of whom went to college together and are now roughly in their 50’s or 60’s and are convening at a dinner party. While the plot of this play is certainly well-crafted and keeps the audience hanging on to every word and movement, particularly in the second act, it is the exploration of the friends’ relationships that is the most fascinating aspect.
The group of friends, it should certainly be mentioned, are incredibly well-off. They drink fine wine, live in mansions, and wear expensive clothing—thus explaining the “Paradise” portion of the title. “Kithless,” referring to a lack of friends, is what makes this a fairly dark play. Although each of these six characters is well-off financially, the relationships (if you can even call them relationships in this case) that they have with one another are incredibly shallow. When one of the friends breaks the news that she has cancer, the others seem to try to just avoid the topic by making light jokes and trying to avoid any serious discussion. Throughout the play what was most apparent was the self-centeredness, shallowness, and unrealized absurdity of each of the characters. All aspects of the play were incredibly well-executed, from the dialogue and acting to the direction, making this play an absolutely fascinating, yet dark, must-see.
Kithless In Paradise runs at Theatre Row’s Lion Theatre (410 West 42 Street), through October 9th. For tickets and more information, please visit http://www.theatrerow.org/thelion.htm.