A progressive love story is one for all

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show review.

Michelle Clunie, former star of the groundbreaking Showtime series Queer as Folk, takes to the New York City stage in “US – A Progressive Love Story,” her debut as a playwright. In “US,” Clunie plays a high profile actress whose marriage to an up-and-coming Senator (Jeff LeBeau) has fallen on the rocks when she discovers his latest infidelity. 

US proceeds to take the audience on a metaphysical journey, evoking the writing traditions of Thornton Wilder, as it examines the deep roots and complexities of this couple’s

Jennifer Gelfer, director of US, demonstrates careful skill in keeping the action moving about the theater space; incorporating integrated video and music technology that allows the audience to wander inside of more intimate moments and those that would be, otherwise, difficult to stage; and discovering the powerful moments of silence inside of Clunie’s rapid-fire dialogue. It is a combination of these three skills, as a director, that (without spoiling a thing) brings to life the play’s most powerful moment at the end. Also, the scenic design, by David Mauer, and lighting design, by Nastassia Jimenez, add layers to the theater that complement those found in Clunie’s writing. 

As the performers, Clunie and LeBeau have an undeniable chemistry together that keeps the show on its toes, pulling the audience along toward a conclusion that seems uncertain from the onset. It is through these performances and Clunie’s raw dialogue in which we are able to discover the tender moments that make this relationship, like America, so wonderful to be a part of. Yet, we become devastated by other moments that can make being a part of it blasphemous. 

Is US – A Progressive Love Story one for all of us? Absolutely. With its woven intricacies, carefully crafted story, and nod to equal rights, Michelle Clunie has gifted New York City audiences with a play which, like Wilder’s Our Town, is both a definitive piece of romance and one that captures the political challenges of the times we are living in.  

US will be playing through September 29th at The Lion Theater @ Theatre Row. Ticket information is available at www.ustheplay.com/about.html or by calling 212-239-6200.

show review.

Michelle Clunie, former star of the groundbreaking Showtime series Queer as Folk, takes to the New York City stage in “US – A Progressive Love Story,” her debut as a playwright. In “US,” Clunie plays a high profile actress whose marriage to an up-and-coming Senator (Jeff LeBeau) has fallen on the rocks when she discovers his latest infidelity.