Clever, refreshing and fun. Three words that describe Cotuit Center for the Arts’ “Lulu & Mona vs. The Minotaur,” a new play by Holly Erin McCarthy.
The show has a big heart and a good-sized cast for the intimate Black Box Theater. Eleven performers bring the high-energy show to life.
The plot concerns lemons, a missing Player 2 and a generous dose of Greek mythology.
Spunky entrepreneur Lulu not only operates a lemonade stand but takes it on the road with “pocket lemonade,” which she gives away freely to those who are in need in exchange for whatever the thirsty happen to have in their pockets.
Perky Lulu hooks up with Mona, an earnest and determined hero-type who is looking for a new Player 2, having mysteriously lost hers, a chap named Sammy, who in addition to being Player 2 was also Mona’s best friend. Sammy’s mother, Mama Panzo, is also missing her son and their apple store is suffering in his absence, so Lulu and Mona set out on a quest to find him.
If all of this sounds confusing, don’t worry; the play moves along quickly and with a hearty dose of humor. All will be revealed.
In addition to our two heroines, the play includes a cast of singers, bazaar vendors, mystic oracles, would-be sidekicks, poets, and even three puppets: Mrs. Landingcastle, Lulu’s savvy business manager; Lulu’s accountant, a brown bear; and Trash Can Dan, a scatting, beatnik pig. All three are voiced and manipulated by Anthony Teixeira.
The plot also includes a hedge maze, a minotaur, a prophecy, lots of witty dialogue, some fun ensemble songs, and a message that includes more than a few ruminations on the importance of friendship.
Celia Cota plays the enthusiastic Lulu. She’s over the top as the BFF you wish you always had; 19-year-old Nora Canaday is the intense Mona, a Don Quixote-like hero in search of a quest. “I create excitement and you come along and help,” she explains to Lulu.
The young thespians who made up the ensemble, dressed as a Greek Chorus in simple white robes with various appropriate accessories, move the plot, and the black cubes that make up the set, around. Their singing, dancing, acting, and sometimes wild gesturing all drew laughter and applause.
Maret Gable played Hermes, god of trade, and in this case the organizer of the Bixby Bartering Bazaar. She not only describes the legend of the minotaur but also instructs us on the importance of shopping local.
Hannah Carrita is the narcoleptic Mama Panzo and the Mysterious Stranger.
The play was written and directed by Holly Erin McCarthy, founder/director of Theater Under the Stairs, which is now in its ninth season. The show is her fourth original work.
Music is also by Ms. McCarthy, with arrangements by Henry Buck and direction by Anthony Teixeira. Choreography is by Hannah Carrita.
The show runs for approximately one hour with no intermission. It is suitable—and will be thoroughly enjoyed—by all ages.
“Lulu and Mona vs. The Minotaur” will be performed at the Black Box Theater through Sunday. Showtimes are 10 AM and 12:30 PM on Friday and Saturday, and 10 AM on Sunday. Tickets are $12 and can be purchased online.
Cotuit Center for the Arts is at 4404 Route 28 in Cotuit.