Review of The Possession of Mrs. Jones by David Fickbohm of Theaterkat

In Sixth Street Playhouse on November 18, 2009 at 5:07 pm

The Possession of Mrs. Jones

Dave Fickbohm lives in Marin County and regularly reviews live theater productions in the San Francisco Bay Area. Contact Dave Fickbohm at
The best cult films are happy accidents rather than prefab “niche” products. But onstage there’s a kind of formula for kitschy, fabulous, late night style fun, genre parody, suburban revolt, beehive wigs.

D’Arcy Drollinger’s musical “The Possession of Mrs. Jones” delivers the goods with Day-Glo pertness, suggesting an unholy shotgun wedding of “Bewitched” and “Ruthless” with a few daubs of “Hairspray.”

The heroine (Allison “Sunny” Marcom) is a too-perfect 1950s housewife whose new washing machine has a few design flaws. For one, it’s manufactured by an evil company intent on buying up this world and the next. Oh, and it contains God (Michael Van Why) and Satan (Keith Baker), who tumble out to do a song and dance plea for Mrs. Jones’ help.

It’s a rocky start, but things kick into gear when God and Satan end up replacing, the bodies of the Jones kids and discovering how the other half lives.

When we glimpse Van Why as a frazzled wigged delinquent teenage girl with a hairy chest, we get a hilariously ugly image. We know we are in good hands when we see David Wolf’s wonderfully, workable sets, John Connole’s excellent lighting, Jan Lembke’s sound design, and Pat Fitzgerald’s costumes.

No housewife unhinged narrative would be complete without an uncomprehending husband (Mark Bradbury) and small minded neighbors: an impish mayor (Edward McCloud), and a dizzy Tupperware saleswoman (Laura Downing Lee).

Hilarious characters and performances are presented by Amie Shapiro as Gloria, Tyler Costin as Jimmy, Heather Lane as Judith and Katie Kelley as Richard.

Drollinger’s and Ted Hamer’s pleasantly peppy music is perkily rendered by a Justin Pyne on piano and keyboard, Quinten Cohen on drums, Josh Fossgreen on bass and Timmothy Robbins on guitar.  Director Nancy Prebilich keeps the laughs on track and the irony thick as Velveeta cheese.

What: ‘Possession of Mrs. Jones’

Where: 6th Street Playhouse, 52 West 6th Street, Santa Rosa, CA

When:  Thur, Fri, Sat at 8 p.m. Sat & Sun at 2 p.m.

PRICE: Gen $35 Sen(62+) $26 Yth(13-21) $28 Children(5 – 12) $15 Thurs and Sat matinees Gen $25 Sen $20 Yth $20 Children $15    

Phone: (707) 623-4185


Box Office Hours: Tues – Fri 1 – 4 p.m. Sat 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. & one hour before Showtime

  1. I have stopped writing reviews.

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