Roberta on the Arts
Manhattan Theatre Club Presents "Lost Lake" at City Center Stage I
Contact Roberta
Jazz and Cabaret Corner
On Location with Roberta
In the Galleries: Artists and Photographers
Backstage with the Playwrights and Filmmakers
Classical and Cultural Connections
New CDs
Arts and Education
Onstage with the Dancers
Offstage with the Dancers
Upcoming Events
Special Events
Culture from Chicago
Our Sponsors

Manhattan Theatre Club Presents "Lost Lake" at City Center Stage I

- Backstage with the Playwrights
Ariston Flowers
110 West 17th Street,
NY, NY 10011
Fax: 212.242.5479
Ariston Floral Boutique
425 Lexington Avenue (44th St.)
NY, NY 10017
Fax: 212.867.0607

Manhattan Theatre Club
Lost Lake

By David Auburn
Directed by Daniel Sullivan

Manhattan Theatre Club
NY City Center Stage I
West 55th Street, Btw. 6th and 7th Avenues

Artistic Director, Lynne Meadow
Executive Producer, Barry Grove

John Hawkes and Tracie Thoms

Scenic Design: J. Michael Griggs
Costume Design: Jess Goldstein
Lighting Design: Robert Perry
Original Music & Sound Design: Fitz Patton
Movement Consultant: Thomas Schall
Production Stage Manager: David Sugarman
Casting: Caparelliotis Casting
& Kelly Gillespie
General Manager: Florie Seery
Press: Boneau/Bryan-Brown
Director of Artistic Development: Jerry Patch
Director of Marketing: Debra Waxman-Pilla
Director of Development: Lynne Randall
Production Managers: Bethany Weinstein & Joshua Helman
Artistic Line Producer: Barclay Stiff
Director of Casting: Nancy Piccione
General Manager, Lost Lake: Lindsey Sag

Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
November 22, 2014

Lost Lake, a new, two-actor play, presented by Manhattan Theatre Club, is written by David Auburn. How many of us have dreamed of escaping the city to an upstate lake house? The notion is so intriguing and inviting. Yet, when Veronica arrives at Hogan’s vacation listing, it’s a shack on a lake, with shabby, comfortable chairs, one tiny bed, a bit of trash lying about, shutters that don’t close, and a waterfront dock that shouldn’t be climbed. The widowed Veronica (Tracie Thoms) has plans for children to join her, and she’s quite anxious to make the best of this. She’s a nurse practitioner, with a job crisis and bigger pocketbook crisis, plus, as an African-American, some lakeside property owners have strung her out. After some quick negotiating, an acceptable deal is drawn up, with security and down payment, but that’s just the beginning of this tale. This one-act play keeps a relaxed grip on the viewer, as Hogan (John Hawkes) keeps showing up, during Tracie’s vacation. The two become soul-mates, of sorts, with Tracie revealing her nursing travails and Hogan revealing his family estrangement, alcohol habit, and more.

J. Michael Griggs’ set deliberately leaves much to be desired in this seedy, lakefront property, but it becomes home to Veronica and her offstage children (one is a child of an offstage male friend, with whom a bit of drama unfolds). We see Veronica sorting and folding children’s clothes and calling into rooms and out the door. Both Veronica and Hogan exhibit character flaws (Veronica leaves for a while, with her children in the lake; Hogan arrives drunk and mentions a shotgun). It’s soon understood that Hogan’s home was this shack, and now he sleeps in his truck, nearby. This is a very human, poignant tale, almost disarming, as the audience is set up for more torturous terrain. One doesn’t root for this duo to couple up, but one does root for each to survive and conquer his/her demons. Thanks to some emotional two-way support, those demons may have been laid to rest.

Daniel Sullivan directs for clarity, directness, and connectivity in this relationship of strangers. Jess Goldstein’s costumes might have been taken from a Salvation Army bin, but they work. Robert Perry’s lighting makes time pass outside the window and within. Fitz Patton’s sound and music, in this intimate City Center Stage I, ring clear. Ms. Thoms, who was riveting in Stick Fly, is an artist to watch. Her naturalness and unassuming nature give her characters persuasive credibility. Mr. Hawkes, whom I had not seen before, uses facial expressiveness and posture to expand his story. Kudos to all.

For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at