Tis Pity She's a Whore

Tis Pity She's a Whore

With this spirited production of Jacobean playwright John Ford's 1629 family tragedy 'Tis Pity She's a Whore, director Miranda Stewart shows that less is indeed sometimes better. At the play's center is the incestuous relationship between siblings Giovanni (Jonny Rodgers) and Annabella (Hannah Skye Wenzel), whose forbidden love, like that of the more celebrated Romeo and Juliet, comes with a heavy price. But Annabella's stunning beauty attracts other suitors as well; there's the dashing Soranzo (Anthony Wells), who has the favor of Annabella's father, Florio (Jerome St. Jerome); the noble Roman Grimaldi (Michael Hanna); and the foppish Bergetto (Kelly Gullett). The competition for Annabella's hand causes a spectacle of intrigues, spilled blood and dead bodies, in true period form. Stewart has updated the play to the 1930s (Steven Sabel and Holly Jeanne's costumes are fetching) and slightly tinkered with the script, but nothing is lost. Her simple, no-frills staging places the focus on the actors, and the cast turns in solidly consistent performances. Hanna and Wenzel temper their portrayals with the right mix of innocence, passion and wanton sinfulness. Charlie Forray, as Soranzo's willing manservant, Vasques, is by turns cunning, cruel and charismatic, while Emily Blokker-Dalquist is perfection as the vicious, spurned adulteress, Hippolita.
Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m. Starts: May 2. Continues through May 26, 2013

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Archway Studio/Theatre
miles

305 S. Hewitt St.
Los Angeles, CA 90013

213-237-9933

www.archwayla.com