‘The Glass Menagerie’ comes alive at Performing Arts Center

Hodson+Menagerie

David Hodson

David Hodson and Hannah Leon share the stage in the Performing Arts Center at Cerritos College on Oct. 6-9 and Oct. 13-16.

Lukas Luna-Arellano, Opinion Editor

The popular play, “The Glass Menagerie,” was brought to the Cerritos College Performing Arts Center by Cerritos Drama with a run that lasted from Oct. 6-9 and Oct. 13-16.

“The Glass Menagerie” is a monumental piece by famed American scribe, Tennessee Williams.

Containing strong autobiographical elements, it tells the story of a poor, working-class family in the 1930s South and primarily concerns how two siblings clash with their histrionic mother.

Narrator Tom (portrayed by David Hodson) longs to escape his mundane surroundings and his sister Laura (portrayed by Kennedy Geezy) seems to be slowly shutting herself off from the outside world, much to the annoyance of their mother Amanda (portrayed by Hannah Leon).

A gentleman caller from Tom’s job at the warehouse (portrayed by Eric Rodriguez) makes a brief but significant appearance just before the play’s conclusion.

The play drops its characters into emotionally harrowing circumstances and leaves them near broken by its conclusion.

Such dramatic material proved to be a draw for Hodson, who found himself relishing the role of the play’s conflicted family man protagonist

“I think the intensity of the material is what makes it worthwhile,” said Hodson.

The narrator added, “The heavy themes of family, unfulfilled desires and responsibility explored in the play are what make it a great challenge for the actors and what makes a lasting impression on the audience.”

“David was captivating on stage,” said audience member Isaac Wilcox, “Every time he was in a scene, you were just drawn to him and his presence.”

Like any production, large or small, chemistry proved a key component among the cast.

The young performers found great joy in how the presence of those they shared the stage with fundamentally altered their own acting.

Kennedy Geezy found particular joy in this phenomenon as she brought the afflicted character of Laura to life.

“Every actor brings something different to each role. So it’s always interesting to find the rhythm and energy they give out and then find your specific way to work with it,” said Hodson.

“You [will] read the text thinking you have it figured out but then you get into the space with the other actors and suddenly they deliver dialogue to you or make a subtle choice in movement that changes your whole perspective on a scene.”

The drama department’s take on the work of Tennessee Williams left both the actors and the audience satisfied.

Cerritos’ drama plans to next tackle Froylán Cabuto’s “I am Frida Kahlo,” which will premiere on October 29. at 8 p.m at the Performing Arts Center.