Happy Talk @ Pershing Square Signature Center

Photo credit: Monique Carboni

Jessie Eisenberg’s Happy Talk, enjoying its world premiere at the Pershing Square Signature Center, reveals another gem from The New Group. One could, at first, assume that all is happy in Lorraine’s world, (played with relish by Susan Sarandon), but there are complexities brewing across this one-hour and forty-five-minute one-act one never sees coming.

With plot lines revolving around Lorraine’s mom’s caretaker “Ljuba,” (Marin Ireland steals the play here) planning to marry beguiling Nico Santos’ “Ronny,” the ravages of a fatal disease taking Lorraine’s husband “Bill” played by Daniel Oreskes and lots of layers of mother-daughter problems (as Tedra Millan playing Lorraine’s daughter “Jenny,” makes clear in her one kinetic scene), things are indeed not so happy.

At first, it seems Lorraine is blissfully swinging through any slightly sticky situation with nods to her acting (as the play opens she is currently starring as “Bloody Mary” in her local Jewish Community Center’s South Pacific production). But as the play unravels, amid some truly wonderful comic moments, we get the full force of who Lorraine really is and what she is capable of, and her world is going to stay as happy as she can keep it, that’s for sure.

Directed by Scott Elliott, Happy Talk proves to be another great play of damaged characters written by actor/author/playwright Eisenberg…and it’s great way to see Sarandon making an off-Broadway stage appearance of her own.

Tickets can be purchased here for this production that runs until 6/16.

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