Santa Cruz Good Times

Thursday
Apr 17th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Five and Counting

ae_L5YCabrillo Stage offers intimate musical, “The Last 5 Years"
The intimate Cabrillo Black Box Theater provides the perfect stage for the poignant production "The Last 5 Years." Written by Tony Award-winning songwriter, Jason Robert Brown, the musical first opened in the Northlight Theater in Illinois in 2001 where it sold a record number of tickets over the first weekend. Nearly 10 years later, the show premieres at Cabrillo Stage July 8 and runs until Aug. 14. Though its director, Mollye Maxner, is a first-timer with Cabrillo Stage, the play stars veterans Andrew Ceglio and Ariel Buck.

"The Last 5 Years" is a musical that explores the five-year relationship of two career-driven individuals: Jamie Wellerstein, the novelist, played by Ceglio, and Cathy Hyatt, the struggling actress, played by Buck. The show's structure is non-linear as the story begins with two timelines simultaneously: the start of Jamie and Cathy’s relationship from Jamie's perspective, and the end of the relationship from Cathy's. As one of them moves forward through time and the other one backward, the two characters interact for only one song during their wedding in the middle of the show.

As complicated as this structure sounds, Ceglio stresses that "[the show] is not a class," but more of a "... feast for the mind." He asks for the audience to let go of thinking about plot and just experience the show for what it is. Since the audience is aware from the start of how the relationship ends, their motivation to engage with the story comes from a desire to fill in the missing spaces. This entire narrative is transmitted in one act by the only two actors on stage. This is a first for a play appearing at Cabrillo Stage.

Buck and Ceglio met in 2007 when they both were cast in Cabrillo Stage’s production of "Little Shop of Horrors.” They eventually fell in love with each other in real life and are now playing opposite each other again, almost five years later. Both actors have expressed that investing in their characters for this production can be emotionally draining. Ceglio explains that in past productions with Cabrillo Stage, such as "The Wizard of Oz" in 2009 and "Little Shop of Horrors" in 2007, the roles were more physically rather than emotionally demanding. However, Ceglio explains that while working on "The Last 5 Years," it has often been hard to shake the character off once he returns home. Buck adds that the role is challenging because the characters are the "... closest [characters to being] real human beings."

Both actors add that the characters they perform are by no means a reflection of their relationship in real life, stating that they dig into past relationships instead of their present one to connect to their roles. They hope that any person who has ever loved anyone else will connect with some part of the show. "The Last 5 Years" is relevant to a modern audience because it revolves around love in the present age. Buck describes the story as: "... a mirror to ourselves as human beings."

As the show progresses through the narrative, it is also driven by the wonderfully melancholic music and songwriting of Jason Robert Brown. Brown's songwriting for the musical won him a Drama Desk Award for Best Music and Best Lyrics as well as a spot in Time magazine’s top 10 shows of 2001. Ceglio describes the lyrics of Brown’s song as having the power to channel the emotions of the character: "The subtext of the lyrics comes from the emotion,” Ceglio says.

The Cabrillo Stage production has a sextet performing the music of the songs, which are a pastiche of different genres and styles. They also contain complex harmonies and rhythms that create a wonderful experience. The music aids as an accompaniment for the audience to follow the plot of the show as well as the development of the characters. As Maxner adds of the touching quality of the songs: "You want everyone to hear them."


Cabrillo Stage presents "The Last 5 Years.” The show opens at 8 p.m. on July 8 at the Cabrillo Black Box Theater, 6500 Soquel Drive, Aptos. For more information, call 479-6154 or visit cabrillostage.com. Tickets are $16-38.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Growing Hope

Campos Seguros combats sexual assault in the Watsonville farmworker community Farm work was a way of life for Rocio Camargo, who grew up in Watsonville as the daughter of Mexican immigrants. Her parents met while working the fields 30 years ago, and her father went on to run Fuentes Berry Farms.

 

Cardinal Grand Cross in the Sky

Following Holy Week (passion, death and burial of the Pisces World Teacher) and Easter Sunday (Resurrection Festival), from April 19 to the 23, the long-awaited and discussed Cardinal Cross of Change appears in the sky, composed of Cardinal signs Aries, Libra, Cancer, and Capricorn, with planets (13-14 degrees) Uranus (in Aries), Jupiter (in Cancer), Mars (in Libra) and Pluto (in Capricorn), an actual geometrical square or cross configuration. Cardinal signs mark the seasons of change, initiating new realities.

 

Sugar: The New Tobacco?

Proposed bill would require warning labels on sugary drinks Will soda and other saccharine libations soon come with a health warning? They will if it’s up to our state senator, Bill Monning (D-Carmel). On Feb. 27, Monning proposed first-of-its-kind legislation that would require a consumer warning label be placed on sugar-sweetened beverages sold in California. SB 1000, also known as the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Safety Warning Act, was proposed to provide vital information to consumers about the harmful effects of consuming sugary drinks, such as sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened teas.

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of April 17

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Tomorrow's Good Times Today
Upcoming arts & events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Foodie File: Red Apple Cafe

Breakfast takes center stage at Gracia Krakauer's Red Apple Cafe Before they moved to Aptos, Gracia and her husband Dan Krakauer would visit friends in Santa Cruz County and eat at the Red Apple Café all the time. Then they moved up here from Santa Monica five years ago, and bought the Aptos location (there’s a separate one in Watsonville) from the family who owned it for two decades.

 

How would you feel about a tech industry boom in Santa Cruz?

I feel like it would ruin the small old-town feeling of Santa Cruz. It wouldn’t be the same Surf City kind of vacation town that it is. Antoinette BennettSanta Cruz | Construction Management

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

Trout Gulch Vineyards

Cinsault 2012—la grande plage diurne The most popular wines on store shelves are those most generally known and available—Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, which are all superb for sure. But when you come across a more unusual varietal, like Trout Gulch Vineyards’ Cinsault ($18), it opens up a whole new world.