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Steven Culp in "Reckless"

June 20, 1998 and June 21, 1998

Interact Theatre Company, Los Angeles, CA

Presented during the InterACTivity '98 -
The Fifth Annual Festival of the Interact Theatre Company
June 12 - July 12, 1998

14 sponsored projects combined for 13 separate programs, 26 performances
Staged readings & performances of various projects sponsored by the membership and from the Play Development Lab.
75 actors and directors participated, and the works of 19 writers were represented.

Playwright by Craig Lucas
Directed by Fred Sanders

Sponsored by Amanda Carlin

Tom - Steven Culp
Rachel - Amanda Carlin
Lloyd - Dave Florek
Pooty - Christina Carlisi
Trish - Leslie Hicks
Roy - Doug Ballard
Tim Timko - Doug Ballard
Talk Show Host - Doug Ballard
Talk Show Guest - Leslie Hicks
Woman Patient - Christina Carlisi
Young Man Patient - Steven Culp
Receptionist - Leslie Hicks


At home on Christmas Eve, Rachel is informed by her guilty husband that he has hired a hit man to kill her, and she must flee for her life-which she does by scrambling out the kitchen window and into the snowy night. She meets and joins up with Lloyd Bophtelophti, a true "original" who has changed his name to avoid alimony payments and who now lives with a paraplegic named Pootie (who also pretends to be deaf in order to get double disability). Rachel then wins $100,000 on a TV game show and begins a series of picaresque escapades involving numerous psychiatrists and, eventually, an ill-fated reunion with her husband. In the end Rachel becomes a therapist herself, treating her own child (who fails to recognize her) and is led more and more to ponder whether the modern world might not be a vast conspiracy designed to systematically undermine her own increasingly shaky sanity.

Rachel is a perky little housewife with an excessive stream of happy talk on the eve of her favorite holiday--Christmas. Her husband has a unique present for her this year--he's hired a hit man to kill her tonight, although now he thinks they "should have talked it out."

Carlin is perfect as the wide-eyed innocent, pushed out in her housedress and robe into the winter snow in Craig Lucas' dark comedy "Reckless."

In Lucas' farcical tale, Rachel becomes Mary Ellen, begins sampling therapists (all played with great gusto by the versatile Michele Farr) around the country, ends up on the run with a former physiotherapist in a red Santa suit (Dave Florek) and, after being homeless and shot at, learns to love Christmas again.

There's embezzlement, a mysterious, deaf-mute paraplegic girl (Christina Carlis) with a few secrets, a game show, a talk show and some murders along the way. Under Fred Sanders' direction, the cast plays it grounded in a reality that's a tad off-kilter.

If you want to inoculate yourself against the upcoming saccharine holiday fare, Lucas' warped story may be the right medicine.

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