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Theater review: Reduxion Theatre presents 'Love's Labour's Lost'

“Love's Labour's Lost,” a play the director describes as “secretly William Shakespeare's best comedy,” has been transported to 1953 Spain.
Modified: February 19, 2013 at 5:07 pm •  Published: February 18, 2013
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Susan Riley was wonderfully curvaceous and coquettish in both her roles as Maria, another attendant to the princess, and as a model named Jaquenetta, who conquers men's hearts with the ease of a flamenco dancer.

Rivaling the allure of these two attendants was that of Catherine Pitt, who wins the attention of Dumaine, playing a mini-guitar instead of wielding an umbrella, and wearing a green dress that goes with her red hair.

In addition to Dumaine, Burleson filled another crucial, catalytic role as Costard, the photographer whose public dalliance with Jaquenetta leads to comic consequences and helps set the wacky plot in motion.

But if these main and multiple roles were handled with great aplomb, it was the broadly comic performances of Timothy Berg as the military hero Armado, and Jessa Schinske as his page, Moth, that nearly stole the show.

Thrusting with a stick “sword” and wearing an outlandish feathered hat, Berg brought a swashbuckling, Three Musketeers-like panache to Armado. Clad like a sexy Girl Scout, Schinske charmed us even more with her offbeat, acting-singing vocal delivery and claps or rhythmic body language that almost seemed to create songs that others picked up on, out of whole cloth.

Classic yet modern, and capturing Shakespeare's magic brilliantly, the production with costumes by Hanna Matter, lighting by Ciera Terry and choreography by Riley, is highly recommended and shouldn't be missed.

— John Brandenburg