Neil Simon’s Plaza Suite

February 19, 2016



Stick your fingers in your ears for one minute, because I’m getting ready to squeal and tell you how much fun it is to shake up your schedule and do something artsy and different.


Case in point . . .

PlazaSuite_RMT61663Theatre 98‘s new production of Neil Simon’s play, Plaza Suite is the perfect antidote to an otherwise boring, mundane, repetitive evening at home watching political debates. (actually, I’m loving the fireworks in the debates, so let’s choose another example of drudgery – washing dishes).


PlazaSuite_5RMT0575No matter where you live, there’s bound to be a local theatre, and here in Fairhope, we hit the mother-lode of talent with the group at Theatre 98. Plaza Suite was no exception and gave the preview crowd a sneak-peek of what is coming to our lucky community for the next three weekends.


PlazaSuite_5RMT0549As often happens in small towns, I did a double take, because there on stage, was a friend I’ve known only as a Mom I commiserated with on hellish middle school field trips. Shelli Saleeb was suddenly transformed into a comedic vixen right before my eyes. The magic of the stage took over and she expertly delivered her lines, along with her first-act stage partner, Rick Drummond, in a memorable and troubling story. Rick played the philandering husband so well, if I see him in the Piggly Wiggly next week, I’ll give him a kick in the shin.


PlazaSuite_5RMT0598Act two was my favorite scene, just because the writing by Neil Simon was so clever and the actress, Rachael Wetzel, played the role in such a perfect, charming way. She and Peter Goens had the crowd roaring with laughter.


PlazaSuite_RMT61556 I didn’t get a good photo of  her entire ensemble, but Rachael’s costume was stunning (actually, all the costumes were beautiful). The 60’s style turquoise sheath dress was complimented with a matching swing coat, both handmade by excellent costumers with the troupe. You can see the matching handbag on the sofa behind the actors. C-U-T-E!


PlazaSuite_RMT61625The final third act was a fast paced comedic romp between the hilarious and expert actors Chris Francendese and Bob McDonald. What do you do when your daughter locks herself in the bathroom of the Plaza Hotel moments before her wedding? I’d call these two to help. Or maybe not . . .


PlazaSuite_5RMT0618heart attacks may be included.


DSC_1005-1280x720If you are in the Fairhope or Mobile area, get yourself over to Theatre 98 for a fabulous evening. You’ll be so glad to get away from the hum-drum house and into the fast paced drama at the Plaza Hotel. And if you’re one of my far-away readers, I’m sure there’s a local theatre saving a seat just for you!


Show times: 

February 19-21, 26-28, March 4-6. Show times are 8pm every Friday and Saturday evenings and 2:30pm on Sundays.

The directors for each act are: 

One: Brenda Hedstrom

Two: Heather Delker

Three: Robin Ann Page

For more information on the production or to see Theatre 98‘s web site, click HERE. 




  • What a treat, and such a great play! How fun to know the actors! I saw Chicago this weekend at the BJCC, fabulous! A night at the theatre is so good for refreshing the soul! I must admit I can’t get enough of the political circus these days, sort of like watching a train wreck…have a great week Leslie Anne!

    • Leslie Anne says:

      Train wreck one moment and circus the next. There’s always something interesting for sure. Almost as dramatic as the actual theatre! Glad you got to go out on the town. Sounds fun!

    • Leslie Anne says:

      I was amazed at the actor’s ability to memorize so much! You’re right that the dialogue makes Neil Simon plays special. I also like Barefoot in the Park and the Goodbye Girl comes to mind.

  • Angel Curtin says:

    It was a great rendering of this classic play, everyone was fantastic!! Your review is spot on! ???

    • Leslie Anne says:

      So glad you liked the play too!

  • I’m just getting caught up on some of my blog reading and oh my,… your new writing positions are an awesome accomplishment! You truly are a really great and very entertaining wordsmith… is it any wonder! 🙂 Congratulations! And I love the look of your new blog design! Hopefully I’ll see some of your articles syndicated in our papers soon! 🙂 ~Rhonda

    • Leslie Anne says:

      Thanks Rhonda. I understand how that blog reading time goes! I’m playing catch up this weekend on my list as well. Thanks for the kind words, and thanks for checking in!

  • You are so funny. Your friend had better keep his guard up at the Piggly Wiggly!
    Sound like a great evening.

    • Leslie Anne says:

      That’s the price he pays for being such a convincing cheater!

  • I’d love to see it, especially in this building. Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend.

    • Leslie Anne says:

      The seating area is on three sides of the stage, and every seat has a very close view!

  • I don’t think I have ever noticed this building. These old chestnuts are still fun, still draw the crowds in community theatre. Long ago, I was in a number of productions myself, and it is usually a fun group of people to be involved with.

    • Leslie Anne says:

      I can see you on the stage! You should most definitely do it again!

      The Theatre 98 building is the old First Baptist Church and is on Morphy St. about a block off the regular downtown area. Next time you’re in town, see if they are having a show. You’d love it!

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