The Snow Geese is a story about family

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The story is set in November of 1917. Elizabeth Gaesling [played by Melissa Chalsma] is the recently widowed family matriarch. Her and other family members gather at their hunting lodge for some partying and hunting, but there is a lot of stress tearing away at the family fun. Elizabeth is clearly still suffering the loss of her husband, while Duncan Gaesling has joined the military and is preparing to enter the raging bloody World War One and his younger brother Arnold has discovered very disturbing facts about the family fortune.

Bruce Katzman and Melissa Chalsma

Meanwhile Max Hohmann has lost his home and his medical practice because he is “filthy German,” a reality not lost on Americans of Japanese descent at the outbreak of World War Two. Even the maid played by the always sensational Kalean Ung brings yet another dimension to the show.

So much erupts in Act One it is almost albeit not actually necessary to keep a written record to keep up. By Act Two the most stressful matters work out as best they can and life goes on. All in all in it is a powerful portrayal of deep family distress and survival. And it is presented by The Independent Shakespeare Company even though clearly not Shakespeare. Yet in keeping with the tradition of the Company it is one powerful and well-done performance.

Faqir Hassan and Melissa Chalsma

Having been privileged to now have seen several productions from the Independent Shakespeare Company I have seen them be consistently excellent. With a team of actors who are typically at the pinnacle of their craft. That tradition continues in The Snow Geese with Melissa Chalsma, Faqir Hassan, Bruce Katzman, Nikhil Pai, Evan Lewis Smith, Bernadette Sullivan and Kalean Ung,

The Snow Geese written by Sharr White and Directed by David Melville may be enjoyed now through April 9th at the Independent Shakespeare Studio Company Studio, 3191 Casitas Avenue, #168, Atwater Village, Los Angeles, California 90039. Happily there is abundant free parking. Reservations and ticketing by telephone to: 818-710-6306 and online here.

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Photos by Grettel Cortes
Top photo: Nikhal Pai and Evan Lewis Smith