Is God Human After All?

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Is it wrong to laugh at God? Is it wrong to question him? Curtain Call Theatre’s newest production, the regional premiere of David Javerbaum’s one act,  An Act of God, poses those questions and many more.  The show is a three-person set piece that focuses on God, perfectly played by Bill Shein. Shein is inhabited by God in order to give the audience an opportunity to see and relate to the omnipotence behind mankind. God has manifested himself in the persona of the actor, which he explains to all of us at the show’s onset. The rest of the show is God chatting with the audience. Explaining every major event from the 7 days of creation, Noah and the flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, the garden of Eden and the giving of the Ten Commandments to Moses. He debunks many of mankind’s myths and mythologies about him and speaks of his relationships with Adam, Moses, Jesus and Abraham. The premise is God rewrites a new set of 10 Commandments and as he reveals each one, offers an explanation of why and the back story for each of the new “rules”.

Photo by Michael P. Farrell

God very pointedly tells us not to blame him for every ill that has befallen us. He tells us that while we are created in his image, he has foibles in his personality and man has gotten the good the bad and the ugly. What we have done with what he has given us is ours to celebrate and ours to take the blame.

The show is extremely well written; you will find yourself laughing out loud throughout the show. Perhaps more importantly, you will find yourself being provoked into deep thought. It will challenge you to ponder your own existence, the existence of the world around you, the very being of a higher power and what he has done.

Area theatre veteran  Patrick White once again admirably helms this production keeping Shein moving and motivated throughout the performance.  Shein is literally backed up on stage by the Archangels Michael and Gabriel. Complete with wings, the two act as his “Pips” to Gladys Knight and the Supremes to Diana Ross. Michael the true comic relief as well as the dramatic punctuation and perhaps the voice of mankind is deftly performed by Scott Waser.  White has him in and out of the audience and in fact in and out of the theater at various times. Unfortunately, Rich Marshall’s Gabriel is not so effective. He seems at times to be disconnected from the play’s action and off in a world of his own. On the whole, the evening is great fun. If you suspend disbelief and go with the flow you will have a most enjoyable evening on the surface and a great deal to talk about on the ride home. 

Photo by Michael P. Farrell

Held over from last year’s season that never was Founder & Producing Artistic Director Carol Max has quite wisely opted to move it into this season and her timing could not have been better. An Act of God settles in for a 3 week run through August 14 at Curtain Call. The theatre is using strict COVID guidelines, you must show proof of vaccination and remained masked throughout the hour 20 minutes of the show. 

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