Review: Big Love is a Big Hit

Amy Smith (left) and Emily Lappi star in Big Love, performed for its last time Saturday. / Liz Monroy / el Don
Amy Smith (left) and Emily Lappi star in Big Love, performed for its last time Saturday. / Liz Monroy / el Don

By Jocelyne Poblador

If you haven’t already seen Big Love you are missing out big time.

Based on Aeschylus’ The Suppliant Women, Charles L. Mee’s modern re-imagining of a Greek tragedy centers on eight of 50 women fleeing arranged marriages to their cousins and finding refuge in a stranger’s home in Italy. Chaos ensues as their grooms find them and force them to marry. The brides throw themselves around in frustration of their situation. They bang on walls and fight each other, while throwing dishes. Throughout this chaos, the play manages to tackle love, gender politics and violence in a heart-warming, yet humorous way.

“It asked a lot of good questions, and makes people think,” audience member Molly Gorman said.

The play is riddled with cheesy one-liners and bawdy humor but creates a passage for the more serious moments to shine. Guliano, played by Diego Castro is a sassy, gay young man who spends most of the show rambling about his Ken and Barbie doll collection while wearing a purple boa scarf before opening up about how he is afraid to love.

The play continues on like this as characters fill their laugh quota and then break down to tell you their sad love stories. But don’t think that all the characters follow this format.  Actors Amy Smith and Danny Gonzalez fuel the play with their performance, portraying the ultra-feminist bent on destroying the groomsmen and the chauvinistic powerhouse who gets what he wants.

In the end, however the message is clear. Love is for everyone.

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The last performance of Big Love is Saturday April 5 at 2:30 pm and 7:30 pm in Phillips Hall Theatre. General admission is $20, $10 for SAC students and $12 for non-SAC students.

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