Friendly Acquaintances, a new play by Jack Betts, recently had its world premiere at the Met Theatre in Hollywood and will run through Nov. 19. Betts, who mounted two Brecht plays at the Strasberg Institute earlier this year, directs his own play, which stars Ashley Brooks and Alice Hirson in the lead role of Betty Pauley (each actress will play the part for three weeks). Robert Pine has been cast as her husband Mike.
Friendly Acquaintances revolves around eight people whose friendship is challenged when two are arrested for a 10-year-old murder just when they are scheduled to receive a Humanitarian Award in their community. The other six characters wrestle with the question of whether their friends have committed the crime—and whether they should capitalize on the fame that comes with the sensational media coverage. Through twists and turns, the plot reveals which of the six are true friends and which are merely "friendly acquaintances."
Also featured in the cast are Leigh Rose, Don Moss, Michael Moon (alternating with Jack Kyle), Kaycee Shank, Christopher Callen and Art Cohan.
Betts has numerous credits as an actor, director and playwright. He also appeared in 17 spaghetti westerns under the name of Hunt Powers.
Met Theatre is located at 1089 N. Oxford St. For tickets and information call (323) 960-5600. -- By Willard Manus
Southern California Correspondent