Some Angels Play Checkers
The play's opening scenes depict tragic events.
Above, Mary (played by Tammy LaVercombe) shows no compassion toward Frank.
Frank's younger self (played by Fredrik J. Kaan) intervenes during a hallucination as both men attempt to come to terms with the past.
Elderly Frank (played by Jim Hutchings) contemplates his decision as he looks at family photos.
The staged version is an adaptation of the author's short story, The Photo Album.
The one-act play has a much happier ending than the original story.
One-Act Play Festival
Some Angels Play Checkers Review (edited)
by Denise Ronald
"Some Angels Play Checkers," by Judy Kiehart is a drama that explores the effects of a tragic accident on a closely-knit family (Frank, Mary, and Steven).
Fredrik Kaan and Jim Hutchings play the same part, Frank, at two different ages.
Steven (Brice Woolston) is looking forward to college but knows he'll miss his parents. He has been his father's checker's partner since he was little, and his mother (played by Tammie LaVercombe) is fighting cancer. His father only wants to celebrate.
Following is a heart-stopping shift in tone, stage lights fade and light up as the action cuts to 30 years later. The comic relief of a housekeeper (Carla Sonheim) helps transition the thirty-year jump.
The now-elderly Frank makes a sorrowful decision during which his younger self appears in an attempt to intervene.
Just when the show appears to be getting maudlin, an event alters the outcome, (kudos to ten-year-old Isaac Bevington-Stacknois, who plays Tommy), proving it’s never too late to change our fate.
Hutchings does a respectable job playing the grief-stricken, emotionally vulnerable older Frank. Carla Sonheim makes her first appearance on stage as Heley, the housekeeper, and does a fine job. Isaac Bevington-Stacknois is a breath of fresh air. Fredrik, Jim, and Tammy are seasoned actors with Stage Left Theater. Shelley Jacobs directed this play. This is Kiehart's first staged work.
Left to right: Brice Woolston, Michael Turley (hair and makeup), Jim Hutchings, Isaac Bevington-Stackonis, Tammy LaVercombe, Fredrik J. Kaan, Judy Kiehart and Carla Sonheim.