‘Dead Accounts’ A True Credit to Local Theater

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Diana Marbury, John Carlin and Mary McGloin in a scene from “Dead Accounts.” Tom Kochie photo.

I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve seen an actor truly inhabit a character. Last night was one of those times.

John Carlin was absolutely masterful as Jack in Hampton Theatre Company’s production of “Dead Accounts.” He was so good, so natural and so incredibly in the moment that it did not appear as if he was acting at all. This is truly an impressive feat. Even if an actor very closely resembles the character he or she is playing, there’s usually a “tell” in their language or movement, or when they are trying to remember a line. Not John Carlin last night. My hat’s off to you sir. On the strength of this performance alone, I’d go out of my way to see you work anywhere and everywhere again. Bravo!

Of course Mr. Carlin couldn’t be that fantastic without other impressive actors, directors, writers, producers, stage managers, etc. in his company. I was particularly moved by Diana Marbury’s portrayal of Barbara in this show. I’ve seen this talented and dedicated lady in a lot of roles and I think this one was my favorite. Understated and spare, there was a beautiful simplicity and realness in her performance last night.

I’ve never seen Mary McGloin before this show, as I believe this is her first East End role, but I thoroughly enjoyed her as Lorna. Peter Connolly was Zen master perfect as Phil. And Rebecca Edana, who looks like such a sweet lass in real life, was so good as a brittle New York sophisticate. Well done.

Now I don’t usually give much ink to direction, but here I must. Exceedingly well done to you Andrew Botsford. For everything, from your (and your technical team’s) attention to detail—right down to getting real Skyline Chili takeout bags and Graeter’s Ice Cream, which are Cincinnati favorites—to your empathy and understanding of what the actors needed here, I sincerely applaud you. You absolutely wowed me.

Another compliment goes to playwright Theresa Rebeck, whose brilliance in creating this play was stunning. This story about moral relativism needs to be staged and seen a lot. Seriously. A LOT. Absolutely captivating, I’m still turning the themes over in my head.

Of course the stage, set, costumes, lighting and sound were spot on. They always are from this group. I wouldn’t expect any less from this talented technical team of Peter Tolin Baker, Sebastian Paczynski, Teresa Lebrun and Chrissie DePierro.

In my opinion, last night the Hampton Theatre Company reset its high bar. I’d go buy tickets and see this show again and again. It’s that good. A+++++

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