The Placer Performance Calendar


Great Local Shows - Theatrical Reviews

Title The Beams Are Creaking
Organization FreeFall Stage
Date(s) of show March 29 - April 7, 2013
Reviewer Dick Frantzreb
Review A drama can be educational, and FreeFall Stage’s production of “The Beams Are Creaking” was an education for me. In all my years, I have only been vaguely aware of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the German theologian who openly stood up to the Nazis. This production brought his story to life for me, illustrating his thought and dramatizing the conflicting pressures under which he lived, eventually to die in a concentration camp just days before the end of the Second World War. The writing, by Douglas Anderson, is clever and compelling, and first-time director, Alicia McNeill, has beautifully orchestrated the rising tension. Although the acting is uneven, there are several standouts in the cast, and Colin Coate is nothing short of brilliant in the lead role. For me, it was fascinating to watch his skill in portraying his character so naturally, with subtleties that are lost when someone is consciously trying to “act.” A bonus in this production is the frequent use of music throughout, and though most of it is recorded, there is some very competent singing, a lot of it from Coate, who has an excellent voice and who was a pleasure to listen to. This production offers a compelling story, told poetically and with a strong dose of philosophy, drawing to a conclusion that is nothing short of inspiring.

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