This 60-minute, three-act world premiere offers a trilogy of interlinked stories using the same two characters, Emma and Sean (Meredith Zealy and Ron Geren). These two lonely hearts keep meeting, by chance, at the same bar; however, at each encounter, they are totally different characters, and only their names are the same.
Act 1: Emma is a sophisticated widow of means, and Sean is a homeless man in need of a place to stay, a job, and some lovin'. Emma accommodates, then convinces Sean their meeting is nothing but a fantasy he created in his head. Act 2: Sean is in the chips and Emma is peddling her wares on the street. Sean brings her home, offering her a job and some lovin'. Now he tells her that he is a figment of her imagination. Act 3: This time they are everyday single folks, looking to hook up. A match made in heaven, a roll in the hay, a nightmare or two. Is it for real this time? Or are the nightmares in the third act made up of their first and second meetings, real or not?
Writer-director Ivan Borodin's adventure of the heart is staged very simply and is mildly provocative, with tinges of the surreal. It nicely holds interest. However, the three parts making up the whole are basically slight scenarios held together by a question mark, which ends with a fun puzzlement. The presentation is a bit sloppy, with rough set pieces and noisy, clunky, long set changes—at times sans the credited, interesting music compositions of True to Life. Performances are fine. Zealy allows her women free run of their situations with no tie to each other. Geren gives all of his alter egos amiable, individual vulnerabilities and sensitivities.
Presented by and at the Elephant Theatre, 6322 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood. Tue.-Wed. 8 p.m. Nov. 28-Dec. 13. (323) 882-1268.