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Plant City Observer Thursday, Apr. 12, 2018 8 months ago

Rumor has it

Plant City Entertainment presents Neil Simon’s “Rumors,” a comedy that is sure to keep the audience on the edge of their seat.
by: Breanne Williams Staff Writer

Plant City Entertainment is holding an open invitation to the funniest party of the year.

Neil Simon once again proves his prowess as a comedian with his often-overlooked play “Rumors.” The show will follow the story of four couples attending the 10th wedding anniversary of the Deputy Mayor of New York. Moments prior to their arrival, the Deputy Mayor shoots himself, leaving his lawyer and his lawyer’s wife to “get the story straight” on how the flesh wound occurred.

Confusion, miscommunication and rumors lead to a comical evening as everyone attempts to uncover

Courtesy of April Golombek. Neil Simon's "Rumors" is coming to Plant City Entertainment.

the truth. Director Steven Bucko said the play is one of the funniest he’s ever seen, “head and shoulders” above much of what is often presented.

“That’s why it was chosen,” Bucko said. “An audience laughing together, that’s one of the reasons why I do theater… The show is fast paced. You’ll be at the edge of your seat. There’s something always happening because the show is based on a lie that has to keep being edited and changed.”

Because it is one of Simon’s lesser known works, Bucko said he is confident the majority of the audience will have never seen or read the plot before.

The show features nine characters who Bucko said everyone in the audience will relate to.

It is a mix of physical humor and witty back and forth banter. Watching all four couples trying and “miserably failing” to get on the same page has been one of Bucko’s favorite parts of directing the show.

Darryl Parish, who plays Ernie, said one of his favorite aspects of the play is its odd ending. While you get a minor resolution, he said you still leave with questions.

“One thing that I think is really amazing is that there are no weak spots on this show,” Parish said. “These actors are all so talented and I don’t feel like I’m in competition with them. We’re all just playing off of each other and keeping everyone on their toes.”

The show does feature adult language and Bucko said he would safely put the rating at PG-13.

“Comedies always do well, especially here in Plant City,” Jenny Morgan, who plays Cassie, said. “I think it makes it all that much more authentic when you have good actors. The comedic timing is second to none.”

She said different characters are gossips, uptight, cynical and quirky, which make for a perfect environment for rumors to fester. 

Fans of the movie Clue should pay close attention to the banter and see if they can identify the subtle homages to the film.

In true Neil Simon fashion, the play flies by despite being approximately two hours long. The humor and ridiculous situations make it a perfect momentary escape from reality.

“I really think the audience is going to just love this show,” Bucko said. “They’ll be on the edge of their seats. We’ll sell them the whole chair but they’ll only really need the front of it.”


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