Why Do I Feel Like Everybody is Getting Great Jobs and I Am Just Sitting Here Eating a Taco?
Review of American Wee-Pie at Seattle Public Theater
Have you ever thought of trying Oaxacan mole flavored cupcakes? Or savory wasabi cupcakes with framboise? American Wee-Pie invites you to discover the wonderful possibilities in life when you open up to new things, opportunities, and flavors.
Lisa Dillman’s American Wee-Pie takes place in a “dead end” town as Zed (Evan Whitfield) returns to his hometown to attend the funeral of his mother. As a middle-aged adult, Zed’s life is at the pinnacle of dreariness, with a sprinkle of despair. He is a textbook editor who seems tired all the time. As the play unfolds, little by little Zed learns to open up to new possibilities that will ultimately change his life.
As if by mere happenstance, one day Zed crashes onto destiny as he finds Linz (Tracy Leigh), a former high school peer. Linz owns a successful cupcake shop and explains her success as result of her investment in finding out what she is passionate about. Linz becomes the vehicle for Zed to realize the many opportunities and dreams he needs to take advantage of.
However, this is no easy task for Zed who needs to learn to let go and take risks to regain a sense of hope and belief in the ability to find something he actually loves to do.
As Linz guides Zed in this new adventure of self-discovery, he finds himself learning more about his personality, strengths, and abilities. His passion is not represented merely by the delicious cupcakes he learns to make at Linz’s shop, but rather his passion relies on Zed’s discoveries driven by curiosity and motivation to innovate. Zed’s cupcakes are like no other — they are unique creations intended to be shared with others.
The plot reflects many of the aspects that people face in different areas of life. As we observe the characters sharing their fears, discomfort, and unhappiness with their jobs and lives, some aspects echo many of the questions we may have asked ourselves at one point. Is this what life is about? Why do I feel like everybody is getting great jobs and I am just sitting here eating a taco? Am I really happy?
These are the kind of questions that American Wee-Pie comments on. By embracing the ability to celebrate our fears, concerns, and failures and do something with it, the play motivates the audience to think about the little things we are passionate about and to pursue them.
The cast is comprised of amazing, dynamic, and energetic actors that bring to life the vision of the play under the direction of Anita Montgomery. The actors have good voice projection and tone. The rhythm kept the play very dynamic and upbeat. The humor of the play was communicated by the wit of the characters. One character that was particularly hilarious was Pableu, played by David Goldstein.
The evident chemistry among the actors, combined with the audience’s laughter, enhanced the message transmitted throughout the play. American Wee-Pie is a play that invites teens, in particular, to learn to embrace the opportunities in life and pursue the little things that we are passionate about, the things that makes us tick. Teenagers may also benefit greatly by learning through the characters about the effects that certain decisions in life can bring. The play may motivate teens to place greater value in their own passions rather than in the status quo. American Wee-Pie also invites adults, both young and old, to laugh and enjoy the play as they observe the characters opening up to the possibilities of destiny in life.
Once you have experienced the magic and candid sweetness of American Wee-Pie, you may never see a cupcake the same way again.
Seattle Public Theater
January 24 - February 16