Theatre goers in Linden had their appetite whetted on Saturday, July 10th at the LICHAS Auditorium where they were given a treat with the staging of the play `Til I find a place’ written by Guyanese playwright Ronald Hollinsworth and produced by Mahadeo Shivraj. This popular play made into film is an attempt to examine life in a pragmatic way, where reaching out and lending a helping hand to a good friend caught in a calamity can sometimes be to our detriment, even being repaid with ingratitude, the ruining of friendship and ultimately – as was in this case/play -the break up of a marriage.
It was an intriguing play that captivated the almost capacity-filled LICHAS audience. The play in essence revolved around Donna, played by Sonia Yarde who had the misfortune of a natural disaster, when
a thunderstorm/strong winds caused her house to collapse. She went to the home of her friend Sonia, played by Alisha Persaud in the wee hours of the morning and who immediately empathized with her plight and allowed her to stay against the wishes of her husband David; played by Mahadeo Shivraj-who dislikes her with a passion-until she finds a place, which was supposed to be within two/three days or a week at the most.
Sonia then leaves for the USA without Donna being able to find a place. In a flash a relationship developed between Donna and David, who both expressed strong desires for each other, the task now of Donna finding a place is out of the question since she is now pregnant for him. Sonia returns unannounced after some months, not expecting to find Donna still in her home, since David never mentioned to her that she was still there. From here on, the play spins into much action, conflict and intense dialogue between the three of them. Shivraj who played the leading role along with his cast did a wonderful job, capturing their Linden audience; their acting and dialogue lively and spicy, which for most parts was hilarious and to the delight of the audience. But the play also forces us to examine our sense of morals, human frailties and uprightness, touches on the question of abortion, friendship; things that go on with every-day people to which we can relate. The other actors played their roles equally as well as the principal actors, Cleveland `Jumbie’ Jones true to form, took the audience apart and had them `hitting the roof’. This full-length play once again reminded Lindeners of the LICHAS of yesteryear and more recently those plays that were staged during Carifesta, and the Haitian disaster show, among others and was also an inspiring treat, especially to our few playwrights. But for all its worth, it would have been a sold out if the cast hadn’t another appointment and it was held over, there would have been no stopping once the word had gotten around -as it goes with plays/shows.
For me, I think the sound was way too loud and at times deafening, and though there wasn’t any real graphic scene as such, it was an adult show with one or two harsh parts that should not have been allowed for children under 12/13 years. All in all `Til I find a place’ was a lovely and entertaining show.