The Dining Room
[Tea Cup] Six actors playing 48 roles. A dining room. Okay, it's a place to eat, right? Well, not to A.R. Gurney. He seems to look at the simplest parts of people's lives, and see all the human drama and comedy of everyday life that the rest of us just take for granted. For him, the dining room is not just a place to eat. It's a place to battle, to fall in love, to do homework, to make plans, and to confess. The six actors play sisters, brothers, friends, parents, acquantences, and lovers. They could be your next door neighbors or your grandmother's parents. The point is that the American dining room has always been more than a place to grab a bite.

Now in this play, some of the events happen singularly, and some overlap. There are lots of laughs and a few tears, but never a dull moment. Don't be surprised if you suddenly see your own family revealed during some of these scenes. That's the beauty of Gurney. He seems to have a telescope into every window. And he's not afraid to use it.

Diane Bartlett directs this unconventional look at the absurdities of the middle class and upper crust. This is her third show this season, following Broken Up and Sylvia. The cast consists of two new faces to Magic Circle - Cathy Rasmussen and Frank James. And four familiar characters - Richard Spierto (Arsenic and Old Lace, The Man of La Mancha), Lala Montesini (But Why Bump Off Barnaby?, The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940), Chris Quandt (Arsenic and Old Lace, Sweet Charity, Weekend Comedy), and Kris Hunt (Marriage is Murder, Having a Wonderful Time Wish You Were Her, Sylvia).

The Dining Room opens July 9 in the Roseville Theatre, 241 Vernon Street, and plays Friday and Saturday evenings at 8:00pm (Sunday matinees at 2:00pm) through August 7. Tickets are $16.00 General Admission, $13.00 seniors and students. Children 11 and under are $5.00. Call (916) 782-1777 for reservations.