Other Desert Cities
Pittsburgh Public Theater’s production of “Other Desert Cities” is a study in family dynamics of polar extremes. The first act unfolds on the morning of Christmas Eve following a family tennis match. The patriarch, Lyman Wyeth and his wife, Polly, are presented as old guard Republicans, conservatives of the far right; their children, Brooke and Trip, are clearly political adversaries, young liberals of the self-righteous left.
|John Patrick Hayden (l) with James DeMarse|
Extremes in politics, mental stability, familial loyalties, emotional swings, economic status and value-systems mark the dialogue, which is often adversarial yet laced with humor.
|Pilar Witherspoon (l) and Helena Ruoti|
|l to r Helena Ruoti, Susan Cella, John Patrick Hayden, Pilar Witherspoon|
PPT’s playbills, in addition to listing the cast and creative staff bios, season sponsors and advertisements, provide some context for the work that is presented. For “Other Desert Cities”, the audience is treated to a match game of political contrasts (Al Franken in the same quiz as Shirley Temple Black) as well as descriptions of the individuals and venues that are the name dropped references, the likes of Totie Fields, Dinah Shore, the Brown Derby and Mrs. Annenberg.
“Other Desert Cities”, where families put the ‘fun’ in dysfunctional. See if you recognize traits of your own.
“Other Desert Cities” is the final production in the 2012-2013 season for PPT. It runs through June 30 at the O’Reilly Theater.
Photo credit: Pittsburgh Public Theater
Reviewed on behalf of Positively Pittsburgh Live Magazine by Joyce Kane. Joyce is the owner of Cybertary Pittsburgh, a Virtual Administrative support company, providing virtual office support, personal and executive assistance, creative design services and light bookkeeping. Cybertary works with businesses and busy individuals to help them work 'on' their business rather than 'in' their business. www.Cybertary.com/Pittsburgh