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Arts & Culture

'Cries That Bind' dissects the 'tsunami of the soul'

Photo: Courtesy photo, License: N/A

Courtesy photo

The calm before the storm: The cast of Cries That Bind at the Cellar.

Director David L. Rinear, who is the playwright's husband, takes maximal advantage of the Cellar Theater's minimal dimensions and set design to situate scenes at the Hennessey family oceanfront home, an Italian restaurant, and the professional offices of Nell, Michael, and Alexis. Alternative lighting might have highlighted the occasional apparitions of Johnny from beyond the grave. A switch in the register of speech might also have helped. Playing Nell, the center of attention throughout the play, Christi Eanes is an agile, arresting presence, but she might have modulated her voice to correspond to changing situations. The cast in general, particularly Tyler Keyes as Johnny, a live wire and then a ghastly revenant, acquits itself well.

"There is but one serious philosophical problem," wrote Albert Camus, "and that is suicide." Suicide is not a serious philosophical problem in Cries That Bind, nor is the Iraq War a serious political one. It is a sober play about the sister of an alcoholic who returns from Baghdad to die. •

Cries that Bind

8pm Fri-Sat, 2:30pm Sun
San Pedro Playhouse Cellar Theater
800 W Ashby
(210) 733-7258
Through May 6

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