Behling and Company’s production of “I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change” is what I like to call “comfort food theatre,” the type of theatre where the goal is not to challenge but to let the audience just sit back and have a pleasant, un-thought provoking time. And by that yardstick, “I Love, You’re Perfect, Now Change” succeeded wildly throughout its sold-out run at The Pump House in February. Lisa Warsinske, Todd Olson, Elizabeth Arihood, Michelle Walker, Steve Walker, Nick Springer, Jason Bernhagen, Kelsey Taunt, Rebecca Hartzell, Jessica Hemenway, Sara Meyer, Lynn Marie West, Jonathan Lamb and Ken E. Brown formed a solid ensemble as they took on the highs and lows of relationships through a series of musical numbers and sketches. Though the observational humor found throughout most of the sketches tended to fall neatly into pretty stale gender stereotypes, the cast’s energy made the jokes almost fresh.
Particular highlights of the show were Steven and Michelle Walker doing the “Marriage Tango,” as well as Sara Meyer and Jessica Hemenway bemoaning a “Single Man Drought.” My personal favorite scene was Elizabeth Arihood in “The Very First Dating Video of Rose Ritz.” The right mix of humor and pathos, Arihood’s portrayal of a recently divorced woman trying to make a dating video and spilling her guts to the camera in a way that made us laugh with and never at the character. It’s a tricky balancing act, and Arihood did it beautifully.
Overall, although it may not have been perfect and there were several things we would’ve changed, we came to, if not love, at least like the production of “I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change.”
March is mainly known for the craziness of March Madness, but it’s also a time of a flurry of productions happening in La Crosse. And you don’t even need a bracket to keep up with it all.
• UW-L will be putting on a production of the hit musical “Spring Awakening” March 1 through March 10.
• The La Crosse Community Theatre will be putting on a production of the play “The Dining Room” March 8 through the 24.
• The Pump House will be staging a production of the Nora and Delia Ephron play “Love, Loss and What I Wore” March 7 through the 24.
• Viterbo will be putting on a production of the classic William Inge play “Picnic” March 14-17.
• The Muse Theatre will be mount a production of the comedy “Steel Magnolias” March 15 through April 7.