‘The Manor’ is by now a Los Angeles/Beverly Hills institution. This brilliant play is in its fifteenth year and definitely on my must see list.
The production takes place inside the beautiful Greystone Mansion built in 1928 and is the former home to the son of the oil rich Doheny Family.
‘The Manor’ even though fictionalized, is inspired by true events. The elder Doheny became embroiled in the Teapot Dome political scandal leading to a suicide and a murder.
The play is presented in the mansion’s opulent rooms and hallways. The names have been changed of course for obvious reasons, but it is still the Doheny’s story.
When the play opens we find that a wedding is taking place. The family patriarch and mining tycoon Charles (the wonderful, Darby Hinton) son, Sean (Shawn Savage) has married the beautiful, Abby (the excellent, Annalee Scott). Thanks to the creativity of the director, Flora Plum, we watch as the cast drifts about in a ghostly memorizing fashion.
It’s here in the exquisitely decorated living room, we get to meet the people who inhabit Greystone Manor as well as their friends and colleagues.
Everyone, including Charles and his wife, Marion (the fantastic Kathrine Bates, who’s also the playwright) could not be happier for the bride and groom. Well not exactly everyone. Sean’s friend and the Manor’s gardner Gregory (Caleb Slavens) is secretly in love with Abbie. This of course does not sit well with Gregory’s gold digging wife, Cora (Melanie MacQueen) who loves to be the center of attention.
Yes ‘The Manor’ is filled with secrets, intrigue, unrequited love and an illegal business deal that involves a super sleazy Senator (perfectly played by Daniel Leslie) which leads to a very bad end for the MacAlisters.
We get to experience it all thanks to the wonderful household staff which include, James, the Butler (Daniel Leslie), Ursula, the Housekeeper (Katherine Henryk) and Ellie, the Maid (Esther Richman) who escort us through the various rooms and hallways of the mansion so we can watch as the story of the MacAlisters as it unfolds.
‘The Manor’ reopened on January 5, 2017 and plays evenings at 6:00 pm on January 5, 6, 11, 12, 13, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26 and 27. Weekend matinees at 1:00pm on January 8, 14, 21, 22, 28 and 29th.
ADMISSION: $65. For reservations call 310-364-3606. There’s no online ticketing.