By Vanessa Ryland-Buntley
“Wonder of the World” by David Lindsay-Abaire was brought to the stage at The College at Brockport’s Mainstage in the Tower Fine Art’s building the last two weekends in April 2017. The play which was directed by Ruth Childs, Associate Professor at The College at Brockport, was a comedy brought to life by a vibrant cast of eight people.
The story focused on the life of Cass played by Tricia Plinzke. She ends up leaving her husband Kip, played by Cody Kaminska, to do all the things she never got to check off of her list and runs into her zany, eventual side-kick Lois, played by Brigette Meskell. Cass is trying to start a new life and Lois is trying to end hers and they end up mingling their sordid, funny backstories with a few people they meet at the look-out point in Niagara Falls.
The play had everything a good movie would have, suspense, action, comedy, love, death and even strange fetishes. Because the comedic timing seemed to be almost always on point, I almost forgot that a death happened. The twist, the death happened to the person not trying to die.
Plinzke’s infectious personality had me rooting for the end of her marriage and the beginning of her happiness even though Kip seemed to love her. The opening scene started with a clip of Marilyn Monroe in her film Niagara and it was hard not to draw parallels to Plinzke and Monroe throughout the play.
She kept her bubbly personality through most of the play which made for an amazing pairing between her and the drunk and depressed Lois. Meskell did a wonderful job of pairing her physical comedy with her phenomenal stage presence. The two along with the other crazy characters brought the play to life. Karla and Glen played by Grace Cunningham and Jake Dion were tourists/private investigators hired by Kip to find Cass. In their journey to find her, they found out how small the world was. This play was a perfect way to end the Mainstage season for the spring. Even though the play almost ended in tragedy because Cass’s love interest, Captain Mike, played by Steven Penta, was abruptly shot near the end; it ended up having a happy ending. Lois and Cass went over the falls in a barrel together but lived to tell it, all while checking things off of Cass’s to-do list.