Orlando Fringe Review: Home Free!
Lawrence (Zachary Lane) is an emotionally unstable agoraphobic who spends his days locked in his apartment, building a model Ferris wheel and giving aggressive astronomy lectures to a classroom of imaginary pupils. He sends Joanna (Cameron Gagne) out into the city to scavenge pens and other supplies, and she returns with stories of her adventures with dead cats and fish-faced neighbors. They are common-law husband and wife — and/or brother and sister, depending on which one you ask — and they are about to have a baby that may turn out to be a litter of kittens.
Home Free!, as produced and directed for the Orlando Fringe by Julia Gagne, is a head-scratching mid-1960s melodrama from Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lanford Wilson that plays like the abbreviated first act of longer work. It’s hard to decipher if the characters in this coffeehouse curiosity are intended to be actual figures or only archetypes, or even if the world they inhabit is meant to exist as anything other than a fantasy.
Cameron Gagne is luminous as accomplice and enabler to her clearly unbalanced partner, alternately placating and punishing. Lane throws himself into Lawrence’s mood swings, from maniacal ranting to petulant whining, with wild gestures and wilder hair, but his torrent of words tended to blend together. Despite the talents of these two young performers, Home Free! feels closer to a well-executed acting exercise than a fully fleshed-out drama.
HOME FREE, BY LANFORD WILSON
Gagne Productions – Orlando, FL
Price: $8 (+svc. Charge)
Disc.: FA | STU
Rating: 13+ – Adult Themes