Doug Field's bawdy comedy Down South will have its premiere, March 17, at the Flight Theatre in Hollywood, with Rick Sparks directing. Presented by Hillcrest Productions, the play continues through April 22. The cast includes Audrey Rapoport (who recently won an L.A. Drama Critics Circle award for Emerging Comic Actress), David Bicha, Anthony DeSantis, Dean Fortunato (of the Broadway cast of Twilight of the Golds), Erin McLaughlin and Alice Vaughn.
The play is set in October, 1962, when the U.S. is facing off with Russia over the Cuban missile crisis. We're not only on the brink of nuclear war but facing other momentous events, such as the first stirrings of the women's liberation movement.
Jennifer is a housewife in Erie, Pennsylvania. The "down south" of the title is an oblique reference to the oral sex her husband won't perform on her. Faced with the possibility of war, Jennifer is emboldened to demand that her needs be satisfied. If the world is coming to an end, she doesn't want to miss anything. It turns out that her neighbors feel the same way: they all have something exotic they want to try before the planet goes up in smoke.
Sparks has directed a number of successful L.A. productions, including Highballs Ahoy! at Luna Park, Tallulah at St. Genesius, and Psycho Beach Party, which won several critical awards. He is also a choreographer.
Flight Theatre is at 6472 Santa Monica Blvd. For tickets and information, call (323) 960-8511. -- By Willard Manus
Southern California Correspondent