Bill W. and Dr. Bob (review)

Bill W. and Dr. Bob (review)
Bill W. and Dr. Bob (review)
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THE PLAY: A biographical look at the founders of Alcoholics Anonymous and how they created the program thru the trial and error of their own experiences.


THE PRODUCTION: From the first scene, this play dives right into the drunken drama, which makes the emotions that much more challenging. The leading quartet is seriously earnest, but they’re often trying too hard (the rudimentary script doesn’t help). Audra Honaker and David Janosik, who play several supporting roles, create the most interesting characters. Their final scenes in Act 2 are the production’s most genuinely moving moments.  Director Scott Wichmann has kept it simple, so that the staging doesn’t interfere with the reach for emotional connection. Unfortunately, more scenes feel strained than genuine. Frank Foster smartly designed a simple neutral set with a bar and shelves of glasses and bottles as the symbolic focal point. Laurel Maughan has found some attractive costumes with interesting period accents. Running time:  2:05


THE POINT: While this production may be therapeutic for those who can relate to the subject, there’s too much message and not enough emotional connection to create consequential theatre.


2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5)


At HATTheatre thru 2/25


Watch the SIFTER interview with Chris Hester about the show.


Ken Moretti, Patricia Alli, Audra Honaker, Grey Garrett, Chris Hester

1 Comment

  1. I saw this play and I couldn’t disagree more. You seem to have a bias toward this subject. This was not a 2 out of 5 production, and based on your other reviews, you seemed to find more at fault with others and gave them higher stars. I saw this with 5 of my friends (and none of us are with AA). It was written in a specific style and we understood that once we started to watch the show. The simple set, costumes, and everything gave it a very old postcardy kindof feel. The actors had heart and were very talented, and obviously there was some emotional impact because people (not an empty seat in the theater) near us were laughing and crying (and the end teared me up as well). We all walked away saying how much we enjoyed the show. Thank goodness we read the Times Dispatch and Gayrva who gave this great reviews, otherwise we might have missed it.

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