Frights Abound at Azuka Theatre: SKIN & BONE

by Connie Giordano

Azuka Theatre presents part two of Philly based playwright Jacqueline Goldfinger’s Southern Gothic Trilogy Skin and Bone, currently running at the Off-Broad Street Theater. Following the premiere of The Terrible Girls, this macabre story of two cannibalistic sisters and their need to feed made me reconsider my potential choice in a cozy B & B the next time I travel.

We meet sisters Midge and Madge in the forgotten Northern Florida town of Transfer. Their home and place of business, a dilapidated and condemned bed and breakfast. Dominant Midge is prepared to go down with the ship, while Madge aspires to the luxury of the motel down the street with the cable tv and room service.

Enter their angel, lost soul Emma (Amanda Schoonover) to track down her late mother’s last moves before disappearing years ago. Longing for the mother figure she never had, and hoping to begin a new chapter in her desperate life, she uncovers some frightening truths about the sisters that have taken her in.

Director Allison Heishman presents a devilish story with the superb casting of Drucie McDaniel as Madge and Maureen Torsney-Weir as Midge, Schoonover as the naïve lost puppy, and Nathan Holt as the sympathetic yet comical legal aid forced to serve papers to the impudent sisters. An amazing set by Dirk Durossette, complete with aging crocheted throws, rickety furniture and peeling wall paper. I enjoyed the wonderful sounds of crickets in the evening, to remind us of where we are; a nice touch, no doubt conceived by Heishman and Sound Designer Daniel Kontz.

Once again Azuka has lived up to it’s reputation for bringing daring pieces to the stage, that always make one think, and in this case, giggle a little, and shiver a lot. I look forward to Goldginger’s finale of the femme fatale trilogy.

by Jacquline Goldfinger
Directed by Allison Heishman
March 5 – March 23, 2014
Azuka Theatre
Off-Broad Street Theater
1636 Sansom Street
Philadelphia, PA
(215) 563-1100

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