THE SISTERS ROSENSWEIG By Wendy Wasserstein (Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company). To June 22. 416-366-7723. See Continuing. Rating: NNNN
Many people grapple with their identity, but few express their frustration as memorably and comically as the women in the late Wendy Wasserstein’s nostalgic play The Sisters Rosensweig.
There’s lots to identify with in the Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company’s second production, especially if you’re North American, Jewish and grew up in a house where contemporary LPs played loudly in your living room and family dinners were consumed at the same decibel.
The play’s multi-?generational characters include expat New York banker Sara (Rosemary Dunsmore), whose younger sisters Pfeni (Sarah Dodd) and Gorgeous (Linda Kash) arrive at Sara’s beautifully appointed London home to celebrate her birthday. Along with partners, children and friends, they spend a weekend discussing their shared history.
Despite some predictable plot turns, the believably loving sibling trio never allows this three-hour production (unusually long for a contemporary comedy) to drag. In fact, the entire ensemble is terrifically cast, but the most memorable performances come from Kash as the irresistibly brash Gorgeous and Richard Greenblatt as Sara’s endearingly nebbishy suitor, Mervyn Kant.
Phillip Silver far exceeds the challenge of creating just one set for all the action. His recessed dining room and the doors and stairs give the illusion of space. As a result, director Jim Warren never lets these globe-trotting characters seem confined.