2 ACROSS Opens
By: Patrick Christiano
The off-Broadway premiere of 2 Across, a new comedy by television writer Jerry Mayer starring Andrea McArdle and Kip Gilman, as Janet and Josh respectively, opened at St. Luke’s Theatre, 308 West 46th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues. Directed by Emmy Award nominee Evelyn Rudie 2 Across is a 90-minute clever little ditty about two apparently married strangers, who meet on an empty San Francisco commuter train at 4 am in the morning.
Janet is a psychologist and Josh is an unemployed want to be actor at a crossroad in his life. She psychoanalyses him after he asks her to move, because she has unknowingly taken his lucky seat. Janet reluctantly accommodates him, reminding him that this is probably a different train and most likely a different seat. They are both working on the New York Times crosswords puzzle, but Josh is stumped. Janet’s wisdom and advice apparently goes in one ear and out the other as Josh abandons his puzzle for a greater prize, Janet.
The two actors land all the jokes in Mr. Mayer’s comedy of words, but their chemistry is decidedly lacking despite their earnest efforts. McArdle doesn’t play the obstacles, Gilman relies on his charm without creating an inner life, and Rudie fails to lead the actors out of their comfort zones. Mayer relies heavily on an unbelievable contrivance at the end to justify his rather slight story that is actually more sitcom than theater.
The opening night party was at the legendary Sardis on 44th Street opposite Shubert Alley
Performances for 2 Across are Wednesday and Saturday evenings at 8pm, with Sunday matinees at 2PM. The show runs 90 minutes without an intermission. Tickets from $39.50 (including a $2.00 Facility Fee.) are available at Telecharge.com or by calling 212/239-6200. For more information, visit www.2acrosstheplay.com . o a new comedy of crosswords and romance.
Photo: Carol Rosegg