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Watch out for this Rollergirl

Rhubarb or How to Play with a Rollergirl

Your new roomy doesn’t walk, she roller skates . . . in the apartment. She’s noisy and frenetic, and seems to always be moving even when she’s seated. You, on the other hand, are quiet, introverted, and afraid of crowds, but in need of somebody to pay half of the rent. It seems that an artist is usually short of cash.

Rhubarb or How to Play with a Rollergirl, the current offering by Moxie Theatre, is playing at The Space of Lyceum Theatre in Horton Plaza. Award winning director, Esther Emery, penned this charming, heart warming piece. Delicia Turner Sonnenberg directed. She moves the story along with Roller Derby queen, Karen (Chrissy Burns) creating confusion in the life of her new roommate, Cecelia (Jeannine Marquie).

Emery’s script sparkles. The contrast of the two characters is just plain fun. Burns rolls about the stage without doing bodily damage to her, Marquie, or the set. On skates, Karen physically dominates Cecelia. She is boisterous, profane, and loud, while Cecelia would prefer nothing more than to be in the solitude of her easel, creating paintings of veggies. (James Daly created two triple studies of veggies for a couple of the walls.) Adam Lindsay’s set is a two-storey contrast of a very realistic small apartment on stage and an upper level for the oracles.

Yes, oracles! On the upper level Tim Parker and M. Susan Peck provide pronouncements. They visit our players in dreams, giving Cecelia and Karen new insights. Thus, there is a charming balance between realism and fantasy.

Rhubarb is an excellent collaboration of playwright, director, and cast. The story is plausible. The characters are easy to relate to and quite believable. While I’m impervious to profanity, if you have sensitivity to obscenities you may be offended. However; all aspects of the production are well done. We welcome a new playwright and hope to see more of her works. She can now add a new skill to her already great track record of directing.


Jeanine Marquie, Chrissy Burns, Tim Parker, M. Susan Peck

Technical Staff

Scenic Design Adam Lindsay, Costume Design Judy Watson, Lighting Design Eric Lotze, Sound Design Margaret Noble, Properties Jo Anne Glover, AD Chelsea Whitmore, Vegetable artwork James Daly, Special Artwork Sheri Kraus, SM Missy Bradstreet, Asst SM John Brooks, Tech FX Nick Fouch, TD Dustin Long

Total Rating: Three Stars

Genre: Dramedy

Author: Esther Emery

Director: Delicia Turner Sonnenberg

Date Reviewed: February 24, 2008

Dates: Thu to Sun, thru March 9, 2008

Caution Guidance: Adult language

Moxie Theatre

The Space, Lyceum Theatre

Horton Plaza

San Diego, CA 92101

Box Office Phone: 619 544-1000

Running Time: 106 minutes with a 15-minute intermission

Robert Hitchcox is a playwright, critic and fiction author, who reviews live theatre.

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