In this production being
performed at the Santa Monica Playhouse, three outstanding artists are
united once again after their previous collaboration in The Rainmaker
which ran for nearly a year at the Edgemar Center for the Arts in Santa
Monica. Jack & Jill, a contemporary love story written by Jane
Martin, features the exceptional talents of Actress Tana Frederick,
Actor Robert Standley, and Director Jack Heller.
While perusing in a library,
Jack happens upon a young woman reading a book of poems by Sylvia Plath.
He is enticed by her and sparks a conversation. When he asks her what
her name is, she somewhat ignores him and his question, so he responds
by telling her his name is Jack and she might be Jill. (I never figured
out if that moniker was really hers or just stayed with her throughout
the play!) Eventually, he wins her over, and they fall in love.
Both Jack and Jill have had
previous marriages, and they donít seem to have much more in common.
She is a medical student and is committed to fulfilling her quest to
become a doctor. He, too, is serious about his career as a graphic
artist and would like to live in Los Angeles. However, to continue their
relationship, he stays in New York.
After their courtship, they
marry and, for some time, have a very loving relationship and happy
marriage. But as the years pass, the obstacles between them and the
differences in their make-up spell failure and, eventually, they
divorce. He moves to Los Angeles; she remains in New York.
Two years later, while Jack is
on a trip to New York, they accidentally meet, and this time, it is Jill
who pursues Jack. He remains in New York hoping their relationship will
work out this time. But once again, Jill is unable to give herself fully
to him. Jack finally has enough and walks away from her. She tries to
contact him, but he refuses to answer her calls. Jill finally
realizes, too late, that her life is empty without Jack. She desperately
tries to reach him, but he continues to reject her calls. Ironically,
they happen to run into each other again, and once again, she pleads
with him to renew their relationship. Perhaps he, as well as she,
realizes that they mean so much to each other that their love is worth
fighting for. He responds with a maybe, they hug each other, and walk
What really keeps the play
moving is not so much the play itself, or the fact that one wishes to
know if the two characters will finally get back together or not. No,
what truly grasps oneís attention throughout are the splendid
performances by Tanna Frederick and Robert Standley. Theirs is true
acting at its finest.
Jack and Jill is playing Friday
and Saturday at 8 PM, Sunday at 3 PM, through March 27, 2016 (EXTENDED
TO APRIL 24, 2016) on the main
stage at the Santa Monica Playhouse, located at 1211 Fourth St.,
in Santa Monica. Online ticketing is available at www.Plays411.com,
or reservations can be made by calling (323) 960-1055.
Comments? Write to us at: Letters@ReviewPlays.Com