‘The Value of Moscow’: Hilariously Implausbile, Wonderfully Absurd

By Tracey Paleo, Gia On The Move

“There’s no place like home… to make you wanna kill somebody.”

What is the value of Moscow? Well, if one had to explain it, and they do try, we’ll just start with really smart theater.

Carrie Keranen makes her Sacred Fools mainstage directorial debut by organizing playwright Amy Dellagriarino’s fascinatingly simple, five-character play into a crisp, 65 minutes of beautifully, nonsensical hilarity.

This is one of the rare moments when I’ve sat in a theater and felt a little bit remorseful of such an abrupt ending. The story could absolutely entertain a second act. But as it stands, the soap-serio finale has a to be continued feeling that leaves it to the audience to imagine what might occur in the coming moments for three siblings on the verge of histrionic implosion.

Three adult sisters, Emily, Rose and Clara, whose lives have fallen apart are moving in together during the onset of a blizzard, bitching all the way about everything from unpacking techniques to cooking choices. Between bouts of angry denial, accusation, dumb, barely romantic fantasy, lies, getting drunk on a found bottle of vodka, and repeated pleas to get along, they decide to order out from the only pizza delivery open in town. What ensues is a practical Three-Stooges style, slapstick turn of events after the pizza delivery guy gets accidentally shot and an angry boyfriend unexpectedly shows up.

Extremely diverting, The Value of Moscow, playing its world premiere at the Broadwater Second Stage is endowed with as always perfect light and sound design by Matt Richter and additionally costumes and props by Linda Muggeridge. Aaron Francis tops this production with a truly inventive scenic design that extends well into the hallway outside the theater that gives this production a fair amount of breath for the short, light, comedy it is.

Starring Julie Bersani, Madeleine Heil, Devin Sidell, Gregory Guy Gordon and Andres Paul Ramacho. Featuring understudies Tiffany Cole, Heather Klinke, Nikki Mejia, Brendan Broms and Ryan Gowland.

So well-directed an acted. If there were any mistakes, they easily blend into the evening’s insanity where mishap piles atop mishap to implausible effect. But we go along with it because it’s just plain wonderfully, absurd as hell.


Photo (above) by Matt Kamimura: (L to R) Andres Paul Ramacho, Madeleine Heil and Julie Bersani


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