“Broken Bones” is a dark, realistic depiction of spousal abuse. What begins as a latenight spat between Steven (Willie Garson), a moody, frustrated computer programmer, and wife Jamie (Michelle Joyner), a sculptor, turns into a furious, violent attack that requires the intervention of neighbor Meg (Debra Jo Rupp).
Writers Drew McWeeny and Scott Swan expertly chart the subtle escalation of rage as the couple veers toward destruction. Garson deftly captures the darkness of this sensitive man, while Joyner honestly portrays a woman trying desperately to understand when she should simply walk away. Play is directed with care and intensity by Don McManus.
“Leon and Joey” is an edgy, surreal comedy about twin brothers. Joey (Wayne Pere) hates everything about himself and his life and is bent on suicide. There’s only one hitch — he promised his dying mother that he would take care of Leon (Ben Meyerson), who’s retarded and spends most waking hours with an imaginary companion, Mo-Billy (Barry Sherman).
Joey decides that the solution is to find a woman for Leon in the personals, which produces Gina (Anne O’Sullivan), a stunningly optimistic survivor of multiple attacks and traumas. Playwright Keith Huff draws magical words from his characters and the result is a poetic, moody piece, well staged by director Paul McCrane.
Romance in all its guises is the subject of “Why the Beach Boys Are Like Opera,” set in the country house of Beth (Janet Zarish) and Charles (Michael Kaufman). When Beth’s college chums Karen (Anne DeSalvo) and Janet (Debra Stricklin) arrive for a weekend with Karen’s working-class boyfriend, Shane (Andy Lauer), and his buddy Harry (Don McManus), the romantic possibilities proliferate, especially when the hunk in the guest house, Alec (Richard Steinmetz) is added to the mix.
Writer Carole Real finds a properly light touch for this comedy, and Ken Frankel’s tender direction brings out sharply drawn details of each character.
While production values are minimal, the pieces are finely polished, with excellent perfs throughout. Producers Risa Bramon Garcia and Jerry Levine have chosen each play carefully, and worked hard to present a diversity of style and tone, both in writing and directing. Their efforts have paid off with another successful evening.