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REVIEW: “Maytag Virgin” at Restless Artists Theatre

By Victoria Janicke

Kevin McCray and Sara Mackie play Jack and Lizzy in “Maytag Virgin” at RAT

Restless Artists Theatre’s current production of “Maytag Virgin” presents yet another thought-provoking piece.

This play delves into the lives of two widowed neighbors as they attempt to reconnect to life around them. Themes of love, loss, self-enlightenment, and everything in between are explored in this passion-filled show.

“Maytag Virgin” is a newer piece that was written by southern playwright Audrey Cefaly in late 2015. Cefaly’s two-hour play mixes the right amount of lightheartedness and deep emotional enlightenment.

We meet Jack Key, as he adjusts to his new life as a physics teacher at an Alabama high school. His new neighbor, Lizzy Nash, is also adjusting and learning to cope with her sudden marital status as a widow. It turns out that Lizzy is also an English teacher at the same high school, and a sudden bond is created. Nevertheless, Lizzy insists on referring to her new neighbor as “Mr. Key.”

The play takes place over one year, and yet the audience is captured in deep observation of the tenuous relationship shared by painful circumstances in the space of a mere two hours.

Lizzy and Jack’s attraction for each other is clear, but their frustration with each other’s reluctance to find common ground is equally understandable. The tension between them as they attempt to hide their real emotion for each other carries throughout the play in their witty and subtle banter.

Will Lizzy and Mr. Key ever find mutual understanding and work through their love and loss issues? Will the stacks of letters left behind by the previous owner of Jack’s house help them navigate through the complexity of emotions that marriage innately brings into one’s life?

For anyone interested in a live theater experience that addresses these questions and a myriad of emotions between marriage and death, this play is a must-see.

If you’re looking for a good night out, with a lighthearted and interesting story, “Maytag Virgin” will not disappoint. Performances run from now until mid-October at the Restless Artists Theatre, 295 20th Street in Sparks.


Directed by: Doug Mishler
Written by: Audrey Cefaly

Lizzy Nash- played by Sara Mackie
Jack Key-played by Kevin McCray

Performances are 9/28, 9/29, 10/4, 10/5, 10/6, 10/11, 10/12, and 10/13 at 7:30 p.m.
and 9/30, 10/7, and 10/14 at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $8 Students, $12 Seniors/Military, and $20 at the door. To purchase tickets go to: https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3575000 or call 775-525-3074.

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