The Ladies Foursome

The Ladies Foursome, 6:30 p.m. Tuesday; 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Wednesday; 7 p.m. Thursday, Friday; 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday $23-$35. B Street Theatre Mainstage, 2711 B Street; (916) 443-5300; Through October 18.
Rated 4.0

Canadian playwright Norm Foster’s latest comedy, is par for the Foster course. It tees off on life with something like nine holes of funny, a sand trap or two, and then a deliberate walk to the final green.

There are plenty of laughs win this B Street Theatre production, the play’s United States premiere, which opened on Sunday. But when it’s over, you just think somehow it could have played better. It certainly could have played faster: The first act felt like 18 holes on its own.

The Ladies Foursome follows four women on a memorial trip around the links the day after the funeral of a friend. Three women (Amy Kelly as Margot, Tara Sissom as Tate and Melinda Parrett as Connie) convene with a fourth player (Shannon Mahoney as Dory), another friend of the dead woman, who was not known to the others.

The challenges of the golf course are nothing compared to the secrets and struggles revealed as Foster—through these women—takes apart life and tries to put it back together in a way that gives it meaning. Each woman has a backstory and is fascinating in her own right. Their talk is frank (sometimes quite sexual) and brutally honest, although the final big surprise is no surprise at all. Let’s just say that promiscuity and homosexuality don’t exactly shock or surprise the way they used to.