This Week in Theater
GARBO’S CUBAN LOVER”
Review by Rose Desena
Macha Theater delivers us a nice slice of nostalgia as we watch Greta Garbo (Angela Nicholas) and her lover Mercedes de Acosta ( Odalys Nanin) come to life before our eyes. These two eccentrics living life in an intellectually haze, wrapped up in the glitter of Hollywood in the 30’s. It was a fabulous time particular for entertainment.
If I could go back I would choose the 20’s to the late 30’s before WW2, which then cast a dark and crippling shadow over the world. Everything about that era was fabulous. The time period had an alluring sexiness to it. People with means were experiencing life to the fullest and the poor needed a voyeuristic escape from poverty. Artist and writers were prospering as America started building and expanding its universities and cultural life.The United States experienced a new economic and social freedom as it became an urban, industrial nation.
I was not that familiar with Garbo or her history other than the rumors of her being bisexual and sharing her bed with many worldly socialites. I was surprised to learn she had a hard time with the Hollywood scene and preferred solitude. She had a resentment for the studios and had no fondness for the business itself. However you wouldn’t know that from watching her. Her screen persona was a phenomenon for that time period. She was a self-made natural.
Angela Nicholas does an excellent job portraying the stunning actress with a likeness so accurate it is almost scary. . Odalays Nanin (Playwright/ actress) created an endearing portrait both on the page and on the stage. Boyana Balta is very convincing as Isadora Duncan and we had a visit from another beauty, Marlene Dietrich (Margo Alison).
There is no mystery here, the play is what it is: a story about a time in history experienced by two famous lovers who resided in their own worlds, as well as a portrait of a famous, yet mysterious actress. The sepia tone lighting done by Carey Dunn is very realistic and very effective. The production is well done and enjoyable.
THE CAST; MARGO ALISON, BOYANA BALTA, ELIZABETH GRALIN, LINA HALL, JENNIFER LANA HARPER, DORIAN MARTIN, ODALYS NANIN, LORI ALLEN THOMAS and CHRIS TRIANA
MACHA THEATRE, 1107 N. KINGS ROAD, WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA 90069
The show closes Sunday Nov 9th. Log on for tickets, Friday and Saturday @ 8 and Sunday @ 6pm