Scroll Review: The Odd Couple

Review by Noemi Linares & Irene Sanchez

MVHS drama performed The Odd Couple by Neil Simon at the Black Box Theater on March 31, and April 1, 6, and 8. Mr. Scott Bier directed the play. Tickets were sold for $7; the first performance on March 31 was sold out.

The play started off with five girls – Sylvie (Ly Ngo), Mickey (Maria Duran), Renee (Claudia Castro), Vera (Emily Mesta), and Olive (Brisa Escobedo) – all playing a trivia game during their regular hangout at Olive’s apartment. Later, they wonder why their friend Florence (Miki Lam) had yet to arrive, as she’s never been late before.

Not long after, they get a call from Sydney, Florence’s husband of 12 years. He explains that they are getting a divorce and that Florence threatened to kill herself. 

The girls panic a little at first, but they calm down and remind themselves that Florence would be too scared to do anything. They all think of places where she might have gone off too before realizing that she would most likely go to the apartment.

About a minute later, someone knocks on the door, and they have a feeling they know who it is. Pretending not to know anything, Vera opens the door. Florence comes in visibly upset, but the girls ignore it. 

After having a discussion, everyone but Olive and Florence left the apartment. The former suggested that Florence should live with her which she agreed too. Olive sympathized with Florence as she herself is divorced.

The two women would soon find out that they are an “odd couple” with very conflicting personalities; while Florence is a very tidy, clean freak, Olive is your very typical lazy, messy, and take-out obsessive person.

The Scroll attended the April 6 show. The two leads, Escobedo and Lam, did such an excellent job playing their roles that you could tell they were passionate about the play. Both Escobedo and Lam are very talented individuals, and the Viking Scroll hopes to see them cast in future productions. 

The Scroll also would like to congratulate and praise the performances of the other staff members. Ngo portrayed her character Sylvie amazingly well. The Scroll loved the particular moment when she carried and threw Florence on the couch without breaking character.  

Mickey was a cop who always worried about her friends; Duran was able to bring that personality to life. Especially since this is Duran’s first production, she did exceptionally well, and the Scroll would like to see her in future projects. We especially loved Mickey’s humor, such as when she made risqué or dark jokes.

Renee was an excellent character made even more enjoyable by Castro’s portrayal. Castro is a bold actor and she seemed to have enjoyed playing her role. Vera was a very funny character. She was seen as the “dumb” friend, but we loved the way that Mesta added humor to her character by portraying her gullibility.

Monolo and Jesus Coztazuela are brothers in the production, who are played by Juan Oliva (Monolo) and Angel Hernandez (Jesus). The Scroll absolutely loved their jokes and the way that their characters mixed up their Spanish and English words. The Scroll thinks they did a great job portraying this humor with their characters and definitely gave the audience a good laugh.

The show wouldn’t be possible without the participation of the dedicated crew (see below, cast list) and Mr. Bier. The cast and crew committed themselves into the play; they rehearsed for 40 days, 3-4 hours each day. Mr. Bier, although nervous at first due to the inexperience of multiple cast members, was pleased at the cast members’ performance.

Anthony Flores and Zamara Ramirez both said they had a great time working as crew members.

Flores said, “It was a new experience, I really liked it, I’d probably do it again next year.”

“It felt amazing. I worked with a lot of people… [and] I had a lot of fun,” Ramirez said.

Miki Lam and Brisa Escobedo play the roles of Florence and Olive in Mountain View’s production of The Odd Couple at the Black Box Theater on April 6.

Photo courtesy of Vista

CastCrew
Ly Ngo as Sylvie
Maria Duran as Mickey
Claudia Castro as Renee
Emily Mesta as Vera
Brisa Escobedo as Olive
Miki Lam as Florence
Angel Hernandez as Manolo
Juan Olivia as Jesus
Mr. Scott Bier, director
Rebeca Favela, stage manager
Zamara Ramirez, costumes
Emily Mendez, house manager
Guadalupe and Joanna Linares, and Anthony Flores, props and stagehands


Full Disclosure: Crew members Joanna and Guadalupe Linares are Noemi Linares’ sisters.

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