With a Vanya on My Knee

Goin' to Alabama with Chekhov's favorite uncle in A Country Life at WaterTower Theatre


Over in the Teatro Dallas space for just two more performances is John Fullinwider's Bridges, a new play with its heart in the right place but too many words in its characters' mouths. Fullinwider, not a strong actor, plays Isaac Rainwater, a teacher and activist. When Prince Mason (David Jones Butler, who also directed), a leader among the homeless who live under a Dallas overpass, is murdered, Rainwater sees ties to City Hall and the police.

The script, based on Fullinwider's experiences during Dallas' 1984 push to become an Olympic host city, plays like an extended Law & Order, sans crisp humor and quick cuts. Spanning two and a half hours, Bridges works as a piece of theater only when the homeless characters swap stories. That feels fresh and authentic. The rest is painfully didactic.

R Bruce Elliott and Emily Scott Banks, lovesick in A Country Life
R Bruce Elliott and Emily Scott Banks, lovesick in A Country Life

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