By Sarita Rao
A bus stop in rural Oklahoma at 1am in the morning. The trash-strewn stage has a bench and an old call box – that’s it.
Daryl Lisa Fazio’s play “Greyhounds” doesn’t begin with dialogue, but introduces us to Toby, played by Christine Probst, as we watch her waiting for a bus and writing a story.
And stories are the theme of this play. As with Greyhound buses, the audience is taken on a journey through America, from Illinois to Tennessee, via Colorado.
Toby, speaks with a southern American drawl, hates most ‘people’ and is witty. Mercy, played by Rhona Richards, her opposite in many ways, a prim and proper housewife from Illinois.
The audience is taken on a bumpy bus journey through the lives of these women. Mercy appears to be a textbook happy housewife, but we find out she is more, when says she is “tired of being invisible”.
Toby is a deep south working-class girl – aggressive but with a very soft underbelly, whose obligatory religious past forces her to make jokes and call Mercy “Salvation” and “Holy”, to hide her own dark secret.
Both women are on a collision course to deep friendship simply through sharing their innermost secrets, starting with a momentous discovery at the bus stop, in the middle of night, in the middle of nowhere.
This is a fast-moving, fast-talking play where the dialogue is gripping and the performances are too. The lines are delivered pitch-perfect and with synchronised timing by the two main actresses.
But it’s not just a play about two people befriending each other. They each also take on the role of protagonists both past and present – Mercy’s truck driver ride and husband Wade, and Toby’s sex-starved boss, alcoholic mother and sleazy home-town preacher.
Under the direction of Erik Abbott the play could so easily have been a nod to the film Thelma and Louise, but it’s far more riveting.
To find out what secrets these women unlock, watch performances on June 3, 4, 5 and 6 at 7.30pm and Sunday, June 7 at 2.30pm.
The play is neatly performed in one go (five scenes) lasting 1 hour and 20 minutes at Nature Elements Am Garage, Robin du Lac on Route d'Esch.
A post-show dinner is available, with reservations recommended.
Tickets for the play are 20 Euros for adults and 10 Euros for children.
Actors Repertory Theatre has also already announced the second play in their café theatre season – Donna Hoke's Flower in the Desert, to be performed in October this year.
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