HOLLY’S DEAD SOLDIERS (Chris Davis, Bruce Walsh and Douglas Williams): 60-second review

Andrew Carroll and Kristen Bailey star in HOLLY'S DEAD SOLDIERS.

Andrew Carroll and Kristen Bailey star in HOLLY’S DEAD SOLDIERS.

HOLLY’S DEAD SOLDIERS, an adaptation of Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s, was written by three playwrights, Chris Davis, Bruce Walsh, and Douglas Williams, each of whom contributed twenty minutes of the hour-long production. (“Bruce Walsh is no longer with us,” says Davis, “because he moved to Indiana.”) Performed in a Point Breeze row home, these distinct segments blend seamlessly into a coherent whole, so that the co-authored adaptation feels loose and casual without being disjointed.

Despite a very funny performance from Chris Davis, who plays multiple characters (including Questlove’s agent), the play revolves around Fred (Andrew Carroll) and Holly (Kristen Bailey). We first meet Holly when she climbs in through the window of Fred’s Philadelphia row home, demanding he read her his awful screenplay about a high school couple struggling with whether or not to get an abortion. “No offense,” says Holly when Fred finishes, “but Roe v. Wade was a long time ago.” As the play’s narrator, Carroll makes the most of the intimate setting, using the entire floorspace and asking not-quite-rhetorical questions about love and infatuation, holding eye contact with audience members until they’re almost compelled to answer him. Bailey’s Holly, on the other hand, provides the play with much of its energy, such as paying eight hundred dollars so that she and Fred can ride horses down Chestnut Street. When these uptempo scenes are coupled with quieter moments, like falling asleep on Fred’s shoulder, the audience understands why Fred would be falling for this mysterious woman who stashes her glock in his basement along with a brick of cocaine.
[A Row Home in Point Breeze, 2118 Reed Street] April 22-May 1, 2016; hollysdeadsoldiers.brownpapertickets.com.

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About the author

Owen Hamill

Owen is a writer and poet living in Philadelphia. He is currently in the M.F.A. Program at Rosemont College.