Miss Saigon Reviewed in this issue.
The Miracle Worker William Gibson's dramatic retelling of Annie Sullivan (Julia Mancini)'s efforts to break through Helen Keller (Marissa Roman)'s deafness and blindness in order to teach her how to communicate receives a mannerly outing courtesy of director Jim Hurley and Clayton Community Theatre. There's no real dynamic to the story, no snap: Events unfold apace until the conclusion is reached, with neither a dramatic peak nor valley in sight. Roman, all of eleven years old, does admirable work with Helen's tantrums and hints at Helen's native intelligence with sly smiles while manipulating her family. Mancini gives Sullivan a flinty brusqueness, and her desperate negotiation with Captain Keller (a blustery Robert King) and Kate Keller (Catherine Crowder, somehow demure and tough) for more time to reach Helen has real traction; here the characters come to life, if only briefly. Through August 3 at the Washington University South Campus Theatre, 6501 Clayton Road. Tickets are $15 ($12 for students and seniors). Visit www.placeseveryone.org or call 314-721-9228. — Paul Friswold