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Keep

Eye-opening, mysterious, and emotional, one family's deepest secrets rise to the surface as they embark on a journey through a (literally) cluttered past.

Madison Comerzan, Jenna D’Angelo and Kim Krane in a scene from “Keep” (Photo credit: Russell Rowland)

Madison Comerzan, Jenna D’Angelo and Kim Krane in a scene from “Keep” (Photo credit: Russell Rowland)

Courtney Marie

Courtney Marie, Critic

When does hoarding become a problem? Most of us have trouble getting rid of items that mean something, but when does our obsession with collecting cross over into concern? Francesca Pazniokas’ Keep challenges audiences to consider that question through the story of four sisters. This family is trying their best to keep things together — while larger issues under the surface are seconds away from bubbling over — as they find out the true meaning of family.

Under Stephanie C. Cunningham’s careful direction, these sisters join together to attempt to clean up the apartment of their youngest sibling, Naomi (played by Kim Krane) as she has let her collection build up to the point of making the space unlivable. The sensitive older sister, Jane (Madison Comerzan) tries to handle the situation with kindness and understanding as she seeks to uncover the behavior of her youngest sister. Middle child, Kara (Jenna D’Angelo) is the complete opposite and has absolutely no patience for her sister Naomi and often lets it show with blunt outbursts.

This trio certainly embodies the dynamic of most family relationships – with sisters struggling to get along and the eldest child having to take responsibility. Comerzan acts as a parent to her youngest sister and uses her compassionate nature to try and take charge of the situation. D’Angelo is the firecracker in the mix and keeps the audience in stitches with her snappy one-liners and sarcastic comments. Krane plays well to the youngest child part – attempting to be understood while making sense of her bizarre hobby. As the play develops, the audience learns about the fourth sister, Margo, played by Leslie Marseglia, whose life path and relationship with Naomi has greatly impacted her sister’s life and means of coping.

Jenna D’Angelo and Kim Krane in a scene from “Keep” (Photo credit: Russell Rowland)

Jenna D’Angelo and Kim Krane in a scene from “Keep” (Photo credit: Russell Rowland)

The set designer, Alfred Schatz, strategically places boxes, trinkets, and other “junk” on the stage, to represent the maze that is a hoarder’s reality. To add to the mystery and chill factor of this production, lighting designer Cate DiGirolamo sets the timing around the dramatic moments – cutting the lights when the action heats up. The costume designer, Laurel Livezey, scales apparel choices to the sister’s ages – with Jane dressed in professional attire and Kara and Naomi in more casual clothing. Margo’s choices are more dramatic, with the use of dark colors, and add to the mysterious course of her life and how her path diverted from the rest of the clan.

Eye-opening, mysterious, and emotional, Keep brings one family’s deepest secrets to the surface as one family embarks on a journey through a (literally) cluttered past.

Keep (through April 30, 2016)

Wide Eyed Productions and Mastodon Theatre C0mpany

TBG Theatre, 312 W. 36th Street, (between 8th and 9th Avenues) in Manhattan

For tickets, call 800-411-8881 or visit http://www.wideeyedproductions.com/

Running time: 80 minutes without an intermission

Courtney Marie
About Courtney Marie (44 Articles)
Courtney Marie is a New Jersey native with a tremendous love for the Big Apple. She has a degree in journalism and currently works in media. In addition to devouring all the theater that New York City has to offer, she also takes to the stage with AfterWork Theater Project and is grateful for the chance to perform with friends.

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