“Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays” at the Minetta Lane Theatre

Tonight I attended a performance of "Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays," at the Minetta Lane Theatre in Greenwich Village.  This production, conceived by Brian Shnipper and directed by Stuart Ross, brings together six superb actors for readings of short plays by an all-star cast of writers: Mo Gaffney, Jordan Harrison, Moises Kaufman, Joe Keenan, Neil LaBute, Wendy MacLeod, Jose Rivera, Paul Rudnick and Doug Wright.  All of the short plays relate in some way to the subject of same-sex marriage, but they are as varied a lot as one could hope for.  Ninety minutes fly by as these extraordinary actors manage to create a succession of different characters without the aid of costumes, props or sets – just acting with their voices, their body movements, gestures and facial expressions.  The actors are Craig Bierko, Mark Consuelos, Polly Draper, Harriet Harris, Beth Leavel and Richard Thomas – also a stellar line-up.  I really would not want to say anything more, so as not to ruin the surprises for anybody who might attend during the remainder of this limited run – or some future performance elsewhere, because this show deserves to travel and be seen again and again.  It left me exhilarated!

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