|L - R Alani Rose Chock and Karen Harrison - Photos by Steve Rogers|
By Joe Straw
The Filigree was once The Elephant Stages. Now it’s part of a whole complex, complete with The Broadwater bar on the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and Lillian Way. It’s a nice bar, very cozy, probably a perfect place to drink during intermission. And, the folks there are friendly.
But, there is not an intermission in this show.
An important piece of this show was the plane, a C-370 transport plane. It’s mentioned time and time again. But, doing a little research about Air Force planes, jet, etc., I found nothing about this particular plane. The press release implies it’s a fighter jet. Nope.The Tri-Service aircraft designation system is a unified system introduced in 1962 by the United States Department of Defense for designating all U.S. military aircraft. Prior to then, the U.S. armed services used separate nomenclature systems.
Under the tri-service designation system, officially introduced on 18 September 1962, almost all aircraft receive a unified designation, whether they are operated by the United States Air Force (USAF), United States Navy (USN), United States Marine Corps (USMC), United States Army, or United States Coast Guard (USCG). Experimental aircraft operated by manufacturers or by NASA are also often assigned designations from the X-series of the tri-service system.
The 1962 system was based on the one used by the USAF between 1948 and 1962, which was in turn based on the Type, Model, Series USAAS/USAAC/USAAF system used from 1924 to 1948. The 1962 system has been modified and updated since introduction.[2
Aircraft which are modified after manufacture or even built for a different mission to the standard airframe of a particular design are assigned a modified mission code. They are:
- A: Attack
- C: Cargo (i.e., transport)
- D: Drone
- E: Electronic warfare
- F: Fighter
- H: Help aircraft (i.e., search and rescue)
- K: Kerosene Carrier (i.e., tanker)
- L: Equipped for cold weather operations
- M: Multi-mission
- O: Observation
- P: Maritime patrol
- Q: Unmanned aerial vehicle
- R: Reconnaissance
- S: Surface warfare
- T: Trainer
- U: Utility
- V: VIP transport
- W: Weather reconn - Wikipedia
Possibly it’s a top, top, top-secret plane for which no one knows anything about except those that are in the know. Still, based on the above information it would have to be a transport plane.
The Filigree Theatre presents the West Coast Premier of 100 Planes by Lila Rose Kaplan, directed by Elizabeth V. Newman and produced by Stephanie Moore at The Broadwater Black Box through August 4, 2019.
|Alani Rose Chock and Brennan Patrick|
Kay McClure (Alani Rose Chock) is a go-getter. Leaving her town in Iowa she is back for a class reunion. She takes a breather, walks outside and lights a cigarette, wanting to stay away from her classmates who are satisfied with their mundane lives here in the town she grew up in.
David Greene (Brennan Patrick) sees a light on the balcony. He calls out her name Kay McClure many times. But, alas, the light is a cigarette in her hand. No matter, he is infatuated with Kay.
And that is a bit of an understatement. David adores Kay and wants to get to know her better. Also, he wants to get updated on her life and where she is going.
Kay doesn’t’ seem that much interested in him. She’s got places to see, thing to do. She’s off tomorrow to catch an early flight to Berlin.
David says he was a weatherman but is in town to take care of his father who is dying of cancer. Again, with Kay, there’s hardly a reaction.
“Why do you like to fly?” – David
“I’m free when I fly.” – Kay
Kay mentions a time in the eight grade, of being fastest person in her class, and looking up to see 100 planes and knowing from that time that she wanted to fly.
“Don’t get stuck here.” Kay says as she leaves for her hotel to pack for Berlin. David is not giving up that easy and he follows her to her hotel room, climbs a balcony and enters her room.
They promise to write to one another. David will write letters and Kay will write lists.
|L - R Karen Harrison and Brittany Flurry|
Sometime later in Berlin Kay crashes a party to meet Major Ann Clarkson (Karen Harrison) a flight instructor, an icon in her field, who is now at the piano with her lover Monique Dupont (Brittany Flurry). Monique is not enamored with the pushy Kay as Kay’s objective is to become a pilot of the C-370. Major Clarkson is not easily persuaded to let this Lieutenant fly her plane when there are so many others that are qualified.
There’s much to enjoy in Lila Rose Kaplan’s play, which, on second thought, seems more to be about the relationship of the players than the dream of 100 planes. Each has their own dream, their objective of what they want other than the person they are with. David wants Kay, but Kay wants to fly. Monique wants to adopt a child but Anne wants something different.
Is the C-370 a real plane? And if it not, why use it?
The director, Elizabeth V. Newman, plays it pretty straight and by the book. She leaves no room for ambiguity in anyone’s relationship. You’re in the Air Force, and you do as you are told. But, there seems to be more here in the writing than was presented on stage. This is a scaled down version of a traveling show from Texas and the planes are symbolic of a much larger ideal. Some other things need a touch of symbolism, the city of Berlin Germany for one which is the later half of the show.
Alani Rose Chock as Kay wants little to do with David. Or, so, that is how it appeared. And yet, Kay jumps at the chance to meet the one person that will help her in her career. Others she meets are discarded to fulfill her dream. There is more to add to this character, starting from the beginning with a cigarette in her hand, the first meeting with her friend, with the major, and so on. If flying is the thing she loves to do, we should see it in action on stage.
Brittany Flurry has a very good look as Monique. Her partner is Anne and the two have a secret, a code name, of something they want to do together. Monique wants to adopt. It’s the thing she dreams of during the coarse of her day. But, she doesn’t convince her partner throughout the play. And her partner needs a lot of convincing. If that is her objective her actions over the course of the play should move her in that direction. Instead she is on a train, alone, that is going nowhere.
Karen Harrison plays Major Anne Clarkson by the book. There’s not much wrong with that except that she is unduly fastidious and it leaves little room for a multi-dimensional character. Clarkson is the center of attention. We see little of what she thinks although she dreams of flying herself. She sees little in the young lieutenant and yet wants to be with on her partner’s most important day of her life without giving it a thought. “I forgot,” is something you say when you’re having a better time with someone else, not to your lover on the most important day of her life.
Brennan Patrick has a lot going for him, a strong clear voice, a good look, and a remarkable presence. His craft moves him in a direction with a strong objective, never giving up on the character, and moving the character David Greene in the right direction. And for those reasons you should not miss his performance.
Stephanie Moore was the producer of 100 Planes.
Other members of the crew are as follows:
Chris Conard – Lighting & Set Design; Tech. Direction
Jennifer Rose Davis – Costume Design
Eliot Gray Fisher – Sound Design
Saly Seitz – Stage Manager
Dominique Carrieri – ASM
Adam Miller-Batteau – Fight Choreographer
Steve Moyer Public Relations – Press Rep.
Shows come and go so quickly.
Run! Run! And take an Air Force Major with you with dreams of day’s gone bye.-->