Make us your home page

'Burglar' delivers at Richey Suncoast

Coveting the famous Worthington necklace, worth millions, pits divorcing spouses and their lovers against one another.

Michele Miller | Times

Coveting the famous Worthington necklace, worth millions, pits divorcing spouses and their lovers against one another.

NEW PORT RICHEY — If the current offering at Richey Suncoast Theater seems a bit familiar, there's a reason. There's a Burglar in My Bed is the fifth sex farce by the same playwright — Michael Parker — that the theater has produced in the past couple of seasons.

But that's okay, especially if you like broad, easy-to-follow, laugh-filled comedy and appreciate a cast that delivers it well, as director Rich Aront's cast does.

Indeed, even though the situations have the same feel — two-timing spouses, double entendres, slamming doors as the two-timers barely miss running into each other, scantily clad women, a bumbler or two — the characters, dialogue, jokes and pay-off are different enough and hold enough surprises still to be fun, sort of like a your favorite TV series, only live and longer.

Burglar is set in a modern-day beachfront house, the getaway from the nearby mansion of gazillionaire William W. "Billy Worthington III (Bob Marcela) and his wife, Ashley (Christine Stoll). They're divorcing, and both of them covet the famous Worthington necklace, a diamond and emerald creation worth millions, and are willing to go to great lengths to get it.

Marcela is a great fit as the basically upright Billy — thoughtful, principled, easy-going — but he's blindly smitten by the gold-digging Lorraine "Buffy" Duval, played by Jesslyn Kostopoulos with facial expressions and physical moves that reveal the real, not-so-lovable Buffy. She itches to get her hands on that necklace, and the two plan a fake burglary with the help of Buffy's sister Deborah, a cheeky Dandy Blethroad, though Billy won't go so far as to also bilk the insurance company, too.

Stoll plays Ashley as down-to-earth — but still wanting that necklace. Ashley and her lover, Edward P. "Teddy" Brookstone (a charming Jeffrey Oles), recruit their lusty gal pal Marianne Van Kleef (Heather Clark — a stage natural) to finagle Billy into a compromising position just long enough for befuddled detective Wiliam Davis (a comical Michael Miller) to snap a picture. That way, Ashley can invoke the adultery clause of her pre-nup and get some of the Worthington loot.

Of course, everyone confuses the fake burglar with the fake mistress, so all the plans go hilariously awry.

Along the way are some unexpected sound gags (think the neighing horse in Young Frankenstein), thanks to sound board operator Zoe Brown, plenty of one-liners, detective Davis' multiple uproarious malapropisms, as well as some well-received topical humor.

If there's a flaw, it's the fault of the playwright, who pads Act 2 with unnecessary scenes that seem to slow the action, even though the players themselves keep a lively pace and don't miss a beat.

>>fast facts

There's a Burglar in My Bed

The farce by perennial favorite Michael Parker is at Richey Suncoast Theatre weekends through Feb. 2. Shows are at 8 p.m., except Sundays at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $17, reserved seating. Call (727) 842-6777.

'Burglar' delivers at Richey Suncoast 01/20/14 [Last modified: Monday, January 20, 2014 7:32pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Spaceballs 2 could really happen, Mel Brooks says


    When Mel Brooks talks about a sequel to Spaceballs, ‘80s fans are tempted to politely smile and nod our heads. It’s a joke, we figure, because how can you possibly recapture the magic of the 1987 Star Wars spoof, especially since John Candy has passed away. 

  2. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for May 23


    Frankie Valli And The Four Seasons: The original Jersey boy himself has produced hits like Sherry, Walk Like A Man, Rag Doll, December '63 and Grease during his long-lasting career both solo and with the Four Seasons. 7:30 p.m., Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, …

    Saint PAUL, MN - JULY 25: Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons perform at the 2010 Starkey Hearing Foundation 10th Annual "So the World May Hear" Gala at Saint Paul RiverCentre on July 25, 2010 in Saint Paul, Minnesota.   (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images for Starkey Hearing Foundation) *** Local Caption *** Frankie Valli
  3. Painted with suspense


    TAMPA — Sometimes a show comes along that does everything. It engages the senses on every level, tells a story that feels real and keeps you guessing to the end.

    Ned Averill-Snell, left, plays Latham and Landon Green is Stumpy, two working class painters working to convert a loft for a well-off couple.
  4. Review: ABC's 'Dirty Dancing' remake should be left in a corner


    It seems as if nothing is sacred anymore.

    Abigail Breslin and Colt Prattes perform the iconic lift in the Dirty Dancing remake on ABC.
  5. Restaurant review: Tampa wine bar Cru Cellars also a worthy spot to indulge in sophisticated plates

    Food & Dining

    TAMPA -- One of the joys of writing about businesses in a particular market over a long period of time is watching some of them find their footing, mature and blossom. Cru Cellars has seriously come into its own.

    Citrus Panzanella, with blood orange, grapefruit, orange, fennel and crouton, at Cru Cellars in Tampa.