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Theatre review: Comedic Fun Reopens Armour Street Theatre for Davidson Community Players

by | Jun 11, 2021 | Arts & Entertainment, News

Davidson Community Players are back – this weekend’s performances are of the play “Love, Loss, and What I Wore.” (Bill Giduz photo taken at the dress rehearsal)

By Connie Fisher, special to News of Davidson

Laughter! At last, the sound of sheer theatrical enjoyment shook the no-longer darkened, dormant walls of the Armour Street Theatre this weekend. The voices of seven talented women brought the Davidson Community Players back to life with the bittersweet, amorous comedy, Love, Loss and What I Wore.

As Gingy, the narrator, Debra Allebach, a seasoned performer who is well known around Lake Norman stages, introduces the audience to the costumes of her life. Showing dresses from a rack full of sketches, Gingy recalls milestone experiences—both thrilling and sad—enacted, in turn, by one of the six women of the Ensemble, dressed in black. Gingy always remembers what she wore.


Think about it. Close your eyes and recall a lifetime event. You probably can recall the outfit you wore. That’s precisely how playwrights Nora Ephron and her sister Della Ephron developed scenes in their play, based on a book by Ilene Beckerman. But Love, Loss and What I Wore isn’t really all about clothes. It’s about what happened in them. as delivered in a series of realistic monologues.

Some monologues are hilarious! Especially when it comes to all kinds of experiences about boobs. Everyone in the audience can identify, even the guys. Their laughter acknowledges empathy. The audience can’t help but react to every scene. Even their eventual deadpan silence admits response to the tearful recognition of heartfelt pain—particularly during Della Knowles’ final scene.

Della is remarkable in the play. She is also a seasoned actor known to area stages, particularly for her portrayals of unusual characters. This time, however, as a member of the Ensemble, she reveals her dramatic talent—and she shines. Della Knowles is the star of the show.

Developed under the capable direction of Sylvia Schnople, there are three new faces on the Armour Street stage—the gracefully sexy Koula Black, the unbending, powerful Sherry Johnson and the determined realist, Beryl Torrence. Their Ensemble portrayals are a delightful welcome to the Davidson boards.

We can count on excellent performances from Jean Kadela and Cat Rutledge, who don’t miss a beat with the variety of their Ensemble characterizations.

Sylvia Schnople’s staging is terrific. She moves the women-in-black around enough, and even into the audience, to break up what otherwise could have been bland and boring portrayals, despite the poignantly relatable words and experiences from the script.

What a way to welcome patrons back into the theatre we have sorely missed for nearly two years—bravo, Davidson Community Players! You aced the season opener with Love, Loss and What I Wore.

Connie Fisher

Connie Fisher, neé Consuelo Carmona, is a Davidson resident who grew up in Mexico City where she became a journalist and acquired a taste for the theatre. Her preference for work behind the scenes led to an interest in writing reviews—Yale Rep among her favorite troupes. Connie is the author of Doing it the Right Way, the biography of an Italian hatmaker. Her prose appears with 87 other international writers in The Widows’ Handbook. An active, founding member of Lake Norman Writers, Connie just released her latest book, "The Mongrel, Bi-cultural Adventures of a Latina-Scandinavian Youth," a memoir about her years growing up in Mexico.​

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