Kristina Nikols, Thespian Thoughts host, reviews You Can’t Take It With You by The Antaeus Company

For an evening of laughs!

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Kristina Nikols, Thespian Thoughts host, reviews You Can’t Take It With You by The Antaeus Company

For an evening of laughs, head out to watch Kaufman and Hart’s comedy “You Can’t Take It With You,” currently playing at The Antaeus Company Theater in North Hollywood. This double cast show designates performance groups as, “The Kirby’s,” “The Sycamores,” and a mixed cast called “The Vanderhof’s.” This review is for “The Sycamore” cast.

Set in the 1930’s, young love flourishes between Alice Sycamore and Tony Kirby. They get engaged, but Alice has concerns about the compatibility of their families; the flamboyant, artistic Sycamores are quite opposite to the rigid, corporate minded Kirby’s. Will Alice and Tony’s love conquer all or will the disparity between the families be too much?

Gigi Bermingham makes a splendid main stage debut as director. Tom Buderwitz’s scenic design creatively maximizes the use of the theater space; the small staging area adds to the chaos that is the Sycamore household. Prop designer Heather Ho appropriately depicts the Sycamore mentality with a variety of clutter. From pink tu-tu’s to fur coats, A. Jeffrey Schoenberg’s costume choices accentuate each character’s personality well. Sound design by Jeff Gardner and lighting design by Jeremy Pivnick are executed without a hitch.

Gigi Bermingham

The cast, composed of primarily equity members, does a solid job. The leads all do well, but the supporting cast steals the show. Veralyn Jones as Rheba gives a flawless performance as the composed maid who serves (no pun intended) as the only glimmer of sanity in an otherwise insane (though charmingly so) household. Her appearance and energy are spot on and she looks as though she stepped on stage directly from the 1930’s! Rhonda Aldrich displays commendable comedic timing as inebriated actress, Gay Wellington. Jacob Sidney as Russian ballet instructor Boris Kolenkhov manages to create compelling mannerisms by capturing a dancer’s grace as well as strong, manly, “Russian” qualities. Amelia White as Mrs. Kirby shines with every moment; she perfectly captures snooty, upper class mannerisms. Her small, but memorable role is one of my favorite performances this year. In the last scene, she re-enters as the Russian Grand Duchess Olga Katrina and showcases her range and accent ability.

“You Can’t Take It With You,” plays until December 9, 2012. Please visit their website and scroll below for additional details.

Written By: Kaufman and Hart
Directed by: Gigi Bermingham

Scenic Design: Tom Buderwitz
Costume Design: A. Jeffrey Schoenberg
Sound Design: Jeff Gardner
Lighting Design: Jeremy Pivnick
Properties Design: Heather Ho
Stage Manager: Gil Tordjman*
Assistant Stage Manager: Tro Shaw
Production Manager: Adam Meyer
Assistant Costume Designer: Jessica Olson
Master Electrician: Justin Kief
Electrician: Watson Bradshaw & Michael Hyland
Dramaturg: Christopher Breyer
Fight Choreographer: Bo Foxworth
Technical Director: R. Scott Thompson
Assistant Directors: Belen Greene & Geoffrey Wade
Carpenter: Todd Waring
Choreographer: Heather Allyn
Wardrobe: Karianne Flaathen


Rhonda Aldrich*
Ryan Vincent Anderson*
John Apicella*
Caleb Chomer

Nicholas D’Agosto
Paul Eiding*
Eve Gordon*
Jeremy Guskin
Veralyn Jones*
Kate Maher
Kellie Matteson*
Lawrence Pressman*
Jeremy Shouldis*
Jacob Sidney*
John Wesley*
Amelia White

Tony Abatemarco*
Larry Bates*
Josh Clark*
Jeff Doba
Julia Fletcher*
David Glasser
Jeremy Glazer*
Shannon Holt*

Michael Hyland
Linda Park*
Joseph Ruskin*
Janellen Steininger*

Marcelo Tubert*
Patrick Wenk-Wolff
Karen Malina White*
Lizzie Zerebko
Ned Schmidtke*

*Member of Actor’s Equity

The show is double cast (the Sycamores and the Kirby’s), with a mixed cast called the Vanderhof’s performing on Thursday and Friday nights. Please see the website for details.

The Antaeus Company
5112 Lankershim Blvd.
North Hollywood, CA 91601

October 18, 2012 – December 9, 2012
Thursdays at 8 pm: Oct. 18, 25; Nov. 1, 8, 15, 29; Dec. 6 (No show: Nov.22)
Fridays at 8 pm: Oct. 19, 26; Nov. 2, 9, 16, 23, 30; Dec. 7
Saturdays at 2 pm: Oct. 27; Nov. 3, 10, 17, 24; Dec. 1, 8 (No show: Oct. 20)
Saturdays at 8 pm: Oct. 20, 27; Nov. 3, 10, 17, 24; Dec. 1, 8
Sundays at 2 pm: Oct 21, 28; Nov. 4, 11, 18, 25; Dec. 2, 9

Thursdays and Fridays: $30
Saturdays and Sundays: $34

Approximately 2 1/2 hours, including a 10-minute intermission

Free parking in the uncovered Citibank lot on Lankershim Blvd., south of Otsego St.



Find out who’s really crazy when a pair of lovebirds bring their mismatched families together in Kaufman and Hart’s classic screwball comedy. The delightfully mad Sycamores celebrate independence, freedom from convention and merry mayhem, while the exacting Kirbys believe in rules, hard work and rigid organization. When young Alice Sycamore falls in love with Tony Kirby, the two families are forced to sort out their differences and ultimately determine what’s really important in life. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and adapted into an Academy Award-winning film, You Can’t Take It With You has been a perennial favorite for more than 70 years.

Thespian Thoughts is a show on Actors Entertainment, a channel on the Actors Podcast Network, a Pepper Jay Production.

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