Starving Class' blessed with good performances

Fullerton College Hornet  - Trudy Anhorn - Friday, December 14th, 1990

One look at the kitchen and you could see that there had been a frantic struggle.

Four of. the five kitchen chairs were overturned. Broken dishes and splintered wood littered the floor around a wheelbarrow. The refrigerator ยท door was wide open and its bright light revealed its emptiness. The freezer door was tightly wrapped with duct tape and a bungee cord replaced the strip on the door's lower shelf. In the middle of it all, lay an empty whiskey bottle.

This was the setting of the Fullerton College Theater Arts Department . Production of"Curse of the Starving Class," which ran November 28 through December 4. The play was a surprising mixture of humor, irony, compassion and fear.

John H. Scott gave a superb performance as Weston Tate, an alcoholic father desperately searching for the meaning of his life. From the moment he staggered onto the stage the mood was intense. His personality ranged from a drunken bum with an unpredictable violent temper, to a compassionate full of hope.

Another notable performance was given by Cress Williams. He played the part of Taylor, a land speculating lawyer. He presented himself as a confident, educated man but became anxious and fidgety when he tried to communicate with Emma, the daughter played by Britton Ashley Hill She took pleasure trying to shock him with her crude behavior.

Most of the other actors were a little stiff in the beginning but as the play progressed, they loosened up and gave exceptional performances.

Guest director, Marjorie Hayes, did a great job. There was an electrical problem that caused a brief delay.

Hayes graciously apologized to the audience, bypassed the problem with an extension cord, and maintained her professional composure.

"Curse of the Starving Class" was written by Sam Shepard, who is also an actor, director and screenplay writer. He won a Pulitzer Prize in 1979 for his play "Buried Child." He has acted in many films, including "Fool for Love," ''Resurrection," "Country," and "The Right Stuff."