Archikulture Digest

Prelude To A Kiss

Prelude To A Kiss

By Craig Lucas

Directed by Frank Hilgenberg

Starring John Reid Adam and Sarah Lockard

Theatre Downtown, Orlando FL</strong>

When love stories go too smoothly, be suspicious. Peter (Adams) hooks up with the girl of his dreams Rita (Lockard) at a coworker Taylor’s (David Hiller) party. She drinks Dewar’s, he’s a Molson fan, she used to belong to the Socialist Party, he has a grind tech job and a desire for children. These are all small points as the sex is great, her daddy’s rich, and Peter’s parents no longer have much to say. A hall is booked, ugly bridesmaid dresses ordered, and it’s off to a fabulous two week honeymoon in Jamaica. Except there was that one weird moment at the reception where this weird old guy (Bill Horine) showed up, kissed the bride, and activated some sort of laser smoke machine weird sound effect thingy that let us all know the weirdness has begun.

The rest of the plot is straightforward if unclear at first and all I can offer is the ending is satisfying. Along the way, this frothy comedy offers some fun acting and a good bit of exposition. Adams Peter is smug but likeable, Lockard sexy and charming, and Horine sympathetic even if you find his back story creepy in a last-episode-of-Star-Trek-way. Other noteworthy performers were Cira Larkin and Harold Longway as Rita’s parents and Jackie Bell as the substitute waitress. It’s a minimal set, rehearsal cubes and projections set the space, the ying/yang floor is pretty cool, and most of the budget went on costumes. And while the 20 year old A/C units struggled to keep us cool, no one fainted in the audience.

There’s not a huge message here – maybe “true love will out” or “don’t judge an attractive woman by her bikini” could apply, and the supernatural aspects feel more like a Shakespearean plot complication than a natural flow from the opening act. That’s all OK, the worlds a mess, and we could use the sort of miracle these lovers experience. Falling in love is always in fashion, and I hope these kids make a go of it. They really seem as if they are made for each other, and they ought to spend some time with Weird Old Guy, now that he’s become such a big part of their lives

For more information on Theatre Downtown, please visit


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