And Now…Our Actual Reviewer Reviews Breeders Theater's "Snowbound"

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by Gina Bourdage

Set in the familiar location of Snoqualmie Pass, an unlikely group of travelers find themselves trapped by the snow-closed passes in “Snowbound,” which opens Friday, Jan. 15th at BTB Advertiser E.B. Foote Winery.

In the solitude of a quaint local inn, each guest is faced with conflicting personal struggles, not only with themselves but with the other guests as well. Learning that the local sheriff (a guy reminiscent of Barney Fife, played by Scott Green) is looking for an escaped convict only adds to their heightened sense of self preservation and sends each person seeking answers about who they can trust and what they are really looking for.

The cast of this Breeders Theater production showcases an array of experienced talent, all of whom holds your attention and keeps you guessing. Each actor brings a unique perspective to their role, including:

  • Binky (played by Brenan Grant) the “emo” young man who relishes in his own misery.
  • Lovely (played by Teresa Widner) whose out of control hormones seem to be too much for even her to handle at times let alone her trail of conquests.
  • Ike (played by Martin J. Mackenzie) the innkeeper who had such a convincing of role of the friendly small town fellow whose trustworthy and friendly nature draws people to him.
  • Glenda (played by Kelly Johnson), Binky’s mother, shows hints of a 50s sitcom housewife whose traditional values are challenged by raising a rebellious young man.
  • Hank Thompson (played by Andrew Smith) the seemingly sincere, reliable and at times dryly sarcastic chef finds himself thrown into uncomfortable positions of his fellow traveler’s dilemmas.
  • The young couple “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” (played by Stephen Scheide and Laura Smith) who find themselves in a suspicious bind that even they are unsure of how to resolve.

Each guest is presented with the overwhelming concern of not only wanting to avoid an encounter with the escaped convict, they have to question; could the convict be among them? Distracted by only their own egotistical veils, each person reveals humorous and deeper struggles among each other.

While I found each performance to be well played, I struggled with the level of general air-headedness that most of the women and at times the men possessed. Being confused is one thing, but as the script rolled along the naivety prevailed leaving me to question the characters’ intended intelligence.

The lack of an actual set was at first distracting for me; however the actors/characters got and kept my attention quickly enough for me to get past it. The theater in the round, or more like “audience as bookends,” might be new for some viewers, but brings a complete perspective to the show and allows you to see each scene as if you were actually there.

All in all this TM Sell play directed by Michael Brunk was humorous, charming and engaging while bringing a level of the traditional whodunnit to an unsuspecting ending that I can only say was jarringly layered and thought-provoking.

I would recommend not missing this performance of “Snowbound,” especially for Alfred Hitchcock and Twilight Zone fans, as the references are abundant…just be sure to bring a coat.

No, seriously – it can get a little chilly at E.B. Foote Winery this time of year.

Tickets are $20, and include the play, hors d’oeuvres and a wine tasting by E.B. Foote.

You can purchase them at the winery (127-B SW 153rd in Burien; 206-242-3852), at CorkyCellars in Des Moines (206-824-9462) or online here.


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2 Responses to “And Now…Our Actual Reviewer Reviews Breeders Theater's "Snowbound"”
  1. Sue says:

    The play Snowbound—Very disappointed with swearing. No need for that type of language to get anger point across. I have been to several plays at the winery—first time I have encountered the bad language & hope it doesn’t happen again. I invited a guest who had never been—to say the least it was very embarrassing and my guest was as disgusted as I was. So TM Sell hopefully you will re-think what is necessary in a play with the crowd that you attract at EB Foote Winery–Bredders Theater plays.

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  2. T.M. Sell says:

    While I’m sorry the writer was offended by the play, I don’t think this paints a very accurate picture of the script.
    It’s not possible (or even desirable) to write something that’s going to please everyone all the time. With every play, some people really like it and some people don’t. I know. They tell me.
    That being said, I don’t go out of my way to needlessly offend people and I don’t happen to think that profanity is much of a substitute for dialogue. Nonetheless, the use of the “A” word and the “B” word isn’t quite the same thing as dropping F bombs in every scene. There’s nothing in the script for Snowbound that you don’t hear on television, frankly. To my mind if these characters spoke like nuns, grammarians, etc., they wouldn’t have been very realistic characters. In real life, when people get angry, sometimes they swear. I try to write how people actually talk, not how I’d like them to talk. That being said, there’s less profanity in my entire body of work, which now runs to around 20 different plays, than in most movies you could find at your local cinema.

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