One does not know what to expect when walking into a production revolving around sports. Many seem to believe that sports and theater do not belong in the same sentence. Michael Ogborn’s FIELD HOCKEY HOT shatters that ideal. With over-the-top humor, this show will make any person, sporty or not, keel over in laughter.
FIELD HOCKEY HOT revolves around a girl’s field hockey team striving for a win at the championship World Cup. When the first rule is broken: No horseplay on slippery surfaces; the star goalie of the team, (Shannon Remley) is sent to a hospital and put in a full body cast. The team’s coach (Jennie Eisenhower), is devastated and worried for herself, I mean—her team… of course. Distraught, the coach is left with no choice but to get a ringer. She goes to her old friend/rival Sister George Michael (Rob Tucker), who provides her with an “orphan” to play the goalie (Alex Keiper).
In this crazy adventure we uncover many more wild characters including: the coach’s son (Michael Philip O’Brien), a drug-addicted doctor and nurse (Brendan Norton & Ali Wetzel), a hip judge (Alina John), a ridiculously evil headmistress (Leah Walton), and a team member discovering her true sexuality (Sean C. White).
The wildly cooky cast of characters could not have been more spot-on. Their comic timing is so impeccable they make Saturday Night Live look like a TV drama. Two stars shine above the rest: the amazing Jennie Eisenhower walks away with the show using her facial expressions alone; the unstoppable Rob Tucker has so many quick changes back and forth that you feel tired for him.
Ogborn’s score is catchy, hysterical, and does its job in furthering the plot. Direction from Megan Nicole O’Brien makes the show go by so fast you are exhausted by the end of the show. Ian Paul Guzzone’s scenic design makes the many scene changes perfect enough to believe. The orchestra is a lively bunch directed by Dan Kazemi.
With such a lively company/book/score, FIELD HOCKEY HOT is a sure-fire winner in the eyes of sports and theatre junkies alike. [Adrienne Theater, 2030 Sansom Street] March 5-22, 2015; 11thhourtheatrecompany.org.