Mount St. Joseph University

Drama club presents Neil Simon’s “California Suite”

Dateline: student newspaper

By: Jennifer Smith

File Under: drama club, play, theatre

Neil Simon’s “California Suite” will be taking the stage in the University’s Recital Hall, running Nov. 14-16 as well as Nov. 21-23. It is presented by Mount St. Joseph University’s Drama Club. California Suite is a comedy “set in one suite at the Beverly Hills Hotel, and follows the mishaps of four sets of characters,” according to a campus wide email sent by Drew Shannon, the Drama Club’s faculty advisor.

The play is offering both evening and matinee showings, as it is being shown at 8 p.m. on Nov. 14, 15, 21 and 22 and at 2 p.m. on Nov. 16 and 23.  The play runs about two and a half hours and the cost of tickets are $12 or $7 with a Mount ID.

Shannon, who is also this production’s co-director, said, “This play will be very enjoyable for anyone who enjoys very sharp and snappy humor.  Neil Simon is a master at snappy dialogue and you’ll get to see the characters make funny digs toward each other.”
In addition, Shannon, who is also a professor in the English Department at the Mount, said that Simon is one of the best comic playwrights from the ‘60s to the ‘80s and has written many other Broadway comedies such as “The Odd Couple.”

The production of “California Suite” will star Gage Adrian, David Lantz, Megan Moore, Molly Moran, Tim Schrenk and Aimee Ward.  The play is also co-directed by Mount alum Mario Pellegrino, along with Shannon. Drama Club members started production during the second week of the term and have been rehearsing up to three times a week, according to Shannon.

The plot of “California Suite” concerns the experiences of characters who come to this hotel from all over the world and stay in one suite at the Beverly Hills Hotel at different times.

According to Shannon’s description, the characters include the likes of a snooty New Yorker coming to get her daughter from her screenwriter ex-husband, a middle-age businessman who drunkenly finds a “surprise” in his room, a crusty British actress and her husband who are hiding a secret, and two couples from Chicago seeking to take a vacation together.

Shannon said this play is also “for anyone who is intrigued by the idea of hotel rooms” and thinks about all of the people who pass through them and all the experiences that occurred in the same hotel room.

For tickets, email or call Carol Herzog at 513-244-4863.