By Dennis Oda, Star-Bulletin
David Kleist (Jake) is surrounded by his women. Back
row from left: Linda Johnson (estranged wife), Michelle
Yuhazs (girlfriend), Stefanie Anderson (first wife), Diana
Carter Anderson (sister) and Sylvia Hormann-Alper
(therapist). Next to Jake, Erica and Mariah Joseph
play his daughter at ages 12 and 21.
Simon says laugh. Simon says smile.
Jake smiles through tears
We're used to having Neil Simon bring us comedy by way of his odd couples and goodbye girls. But in "Jake's Women," opening next week at Manoa Valley Theatre, Simon says cry.
" 'Jake's Women' has a lot of Simon's cute banter," says David Kleist, who plays Jake. It's definitely a comedy, but it also tugs at the tear ducts.
Jake has had problems dealing with women since his first wife died 11 years ago in a car accident.
"As a result, he spends most of his time talking to his memories," Kleist says, specifically, to the memories of women he's known. "As time goes on, these imagined ladies begin to take over," Kleist says, and fantasy begins to crowd out real life.
Things come to a head when the first wife of his imagination asks to be reunited with their daughter, so that she might catch up on the decade she's been, well, dead.
This is where humor morphs into tears, but that's enough said. Wouldn't want to give too much away.
Simon says check it out.
Betty Shimabukuro, Star-Bulletin
On stage: Wednesday through June 6
Venue: Manoa Valley Theatre
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