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by Lee Blessing                                                                                                                                                                  July-August 2013

directed by Skola Summers                                                                                                                                              Austin Playhouse

Nearing the end of the Cold War, two men – a clever, yet cynical Russian and an idealistic young American – discuss and debate politics, life, and the future of the free world on the outskirts of Geneva. As arms negotiators, they explore the obstacles their countries face on the path toward peace. Can personal bonds bridge political chasms? Man has the potential to become a whole new animal. One that trusts instead of fears. One that agrees when it makes sense to agree. That finds the way to live, because life has become for him – has finally become – a sacred thing.


Michael Stuart

& Benjamin Summers


"The Crowleys know how to support the rhetorical landscape of Blessing's dialogue while at the same time contributing mightily to director A. Skola Summers' vision. Their set never gets in the way of either, though. We see the details they're providing us, but somehow they don't threaten to upstage anything. Once we've been struck by the expansive qualities of the narrative artwork onstage, it's as though we gain an immediate trust of that environment as spectators, allowing it to factor ever so subconsciously into the unwinding drama. And I would be remiss not to mention Don Day's lighting, illuminating the proceedings with far more than simple utility...


Inhabiting this set are the aforementioned Stuart and Summers, each of whom gives a smart, fulfilling performance. At all times believable and vulnerable, Stuart's Botvinnik draws one in to such a degree that it's often difficult to glance away. Summers' fiery Honeyman achieves a broad character arc nicely..."

Adam Roberts, Austin Chronicle


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