Snake charmer

Bite Me, Cleopatra

Stephanie Gularte (left), Christine Nicholson in <i>Bite Me, Cleopatra</i>: Free your mind and your asp will follow.

Stephanie Gularte (left), Christine Nicholson in Bite Me, Cleopatra: Free your mind and your asp will follow.

Rated 5.0

Half an hour to places,” calls the stage manager as the actresses pile in to the women’s dressing room.

Tonight should be like any other. The curtain rises … the audience sees a semi-professional production of Antony and Cleopatra … the curtain comes down and everyone goes home to their boring, everyday lives. That is, if the lead actress survives the night as one of the supporting actresses tries to bump her off during the show.

Adding madness to mayhem, the third actress can’t get to the theater. Enter Lisa, the all-too-perky dresser who just happens to know the actress’ part by heart—blocking and all.

Synergy Stage brings to Sacramento audiences a play written and directed by local actor, director and playwright Luther Hanson: Bite Me, Cleopatra.

The production stars Stephanie Gularte (Oleanna, Noises Off) as Jane Brown, Christine Nicholson (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Cripple of Inishmaan) as Daisy, Tasmyn Dillow (A Chorus Line, A Comedy of Errors) as Lisa and Martha Omiyo Kight (Steel Magnolias, The Skin of Our Teeth) as the stage manager.

Cleverly written subtle—and not so subtle—humor and a perfectly selected cast makes this production a laugh riot from beginning to end. Perhaps the best offering from Synergy Stage this season, Bite Me, Cleopatra is a sheer delight for seasoned and unseasoned theatergoers alike.

Antony and Cleopatra has long been one of Shakespeare’s most famous and respected works, yet, after Bite Me, Cleopatra, one will be hard pressed to watch it again and keep a straight face.