Relatively Speaking

Rated 4.0

This comedy about two couples by veteran English playwright Alan Ayckbourn is set in the 1960s, meaning miniskirts, pop music and changing morality. One couple is young and contemplating matrimony. The other couple is middle-aged and, frankly, a little bored. But there’s a common trait: a lack of trust in one’s partner along with a tendency to fib. Hence, the “relativity.”

From this situation, the playwright teases up an elaborate and very funny concoction. Multiple versions of the truth collide onstage, leading to hilarious situations with new embellishments, which the increasingly suspicious partners accept—up to a point.

Making a script like this come to life involves a good eye for detail, a light touch, nimble timing and an ability to keep the audience “in the loop.” Director Peter Mohrmann hits a happy balance in this regard. He adeptly juggles the multiple half-truths and does a good job of keeping the various versions spinning like plates in the air, while finding plenty of laughter along the way.

The cast is a solid foursome of versatile performers: Gillen Morrison and Heather Brooks as the young couple, and Loren Taylor and Gail Dartez as the older pair. It’s the first time we’ve seen Dartez, a seasoned professional who’s recently relocated here, and she is clearly one to watch.