Kind of Heartbreaking
Review of Thalia’s Umbrella’s A Day in the Death of Joe Egg at ACT Theatre by Anika M.
A Day in the Death of Joe Egg tells the story of a couple with a young daughter who has severe cerebral palsy. This dark comedy follows the couple as they attempt to use humor to avoid addressing their situation. As the show progresses, the tension mounts and their careful way of life begins to unravel.
This show marks the premiere of Thalia’s Umbrella, a new Seattle theatre group. The acting in Joe Egg is amazing, with a strong ensemble cast of Leslie Law, Terry Edward Moore, Susan Corzatte, Carol Roscoe, Brandon Whitehead, and Aidyn Stevens. The actors’ high energy and focus keeps the show moving forward. Often it feels that when accents are used in shows it is distracting and awkward but the cast of Joe Egg proves that this is not true in their case, often Moore portrays different characters within a scene or monologue and is able to switch effortlessly between a few dialects. The chemistry and emotion portrayed by the actors is never unbelievable or distracting.
The story itself is sad, funny, and kind of heartbreaking. Although as teens we are not faced with the issues that arise in Joe Egg--how to approach a severely disabled child who is unable to function or act independently and how to save a failing marriage--it is easy to relate to the characters and consider their decisions. There are times in the show when it feels that there is no good or right answer, and these times force you to consider your own morals and ideals. The questions “What would I do?” “What is the best possible outcome?” or “Who is at fault, if anyone?” will pop into your mind during and after the show and can be catalysts for interesting conversations.
Is this show relatable to us? Probably not. Is it interesting and thought provoking? Yes. Go see A Day in the Death of Joe Egg at ACT Theater and you will have the opportunity to see through a different lens and explore a different situation while enjoying good acting and an interesting concept.
A Day in the Death of Joe Egg
Thalia's Umbrella at ACT Theatre
Through February 17
More info at acttheatre.org