SPRINGBORO — La Comedia Dinner Theatre is serving rehashed humor in “The Last Potluck Supper,” the fourth installment of “The Church Basement Ladies” set at a rural Minnesota church.
Set in 1979 in the basement kitchen on the church’s centennial celebration , the cast of four women and a former pastor gather to reminisce about milestone events from 1944 through 1978, with a few scenes added for good measure from the 1890s.
Unfortunately, the fourth installment of the series (the first three were staged at La Comedia over the past five years) falls short in its pedestrian and confusing production. The hodgepodge script by Gretta Grosch revolves around nearly a dozen flashbacks cued by circular lights spanning the entire church basement.
Furthermore, the erratic script moves in fits and starts. For example, the pastor drops the name Bert Byleven into the conversation with no further explanation. Although he is a Hall of Fame baseball pitcher for the Miinnesota Twins, Byleven is hardly a household name to most theatergoers. So why drop his name in the show without further explanations?
Granted, a sketch comedy with repetitive scenes blurred together offers some laughs courtesy of a few farcical moments with the basement ladies, but the show’s overall impression leaves one scratching their head in sheer wonderment.
For the record, the cast includes Denise Cox as Vivian and Claire Theiss Harley as Mavis, the two senior citizens in the basement, and Becky Barrett-Jones as Karin and Malerie Jo as Beverly, the two younger basement workers.
Chris Kramer, who has played Pastor Gunderson in past La Comedia productions, portrays the Lutheran minister once again.
“The Last Potluck Supper” continues at La Comedia Dinner Theatre in Springboro through Oct. 31. For ticket information, call 1-800-677-9505.
To reach Gary Gregory, contact editor Greg Smart at 937-236-4990, ext. 2542 or on Twitter @HH_Courier.com