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Jodi Hersey Jodi Hersey
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Cuckoo's Nest is Crazy Funny

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EDDINGTON - Not having seen the movie or read the book 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest,' I was a bit leery about writing a review of the play that's currently running at the Eddington-Clifton Civic Center (Comins Hall). However, I quickly learned prior knowledge of this infamous story was not necessary. The actors from Ten Bucks Theatre had my attention the minute the lights dimmed.

'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest' takes place at a mental institution where Randall Patrick McMurphy (played by Allen Adams) chooses to be sentenced rather than serving time on a prison work farm. McMurphy easily wins over audience members with his sharp sarcasm and willingness to stand up for the patients in his ward. Throughout the play McMurphy balks at the institution's rules that are strictly enforced by a stern Nurse Ratched (played by Katie Toole). Both Adams and Toole were perfectly cast for their parts and as the lead characters, they are fabulous. In fact, McMurphy, the other patients, and institution wards despise Nurse Ratched - but I loved her no-nonsense, stick-to-the-rules personality!

However, my favorite characters of the play were actually two of the institution's patients - Billy Bibbit (played by Brent Hutchins) and Chief Bromden (played by Randy Hunt).

Bibbit, who has a stutter and suicidal tendencies, is constantly reminded by Nurse Ratched how his actions have disappointed and hurt his mother. Having a loved one with a stutter, I was impressed at how Bibbit's acting was dead-on. His stutter, fidgety movements and outbursts of emotions kept me captivated, while Chief Bromden was a lovable mute who put a smile on my face as I watched his friendship with McMurphy evolve.

Scenes such as the group therapy sessions and the indoor basketball game will literally make you laugh out loud. And if that wasn't enough, audience members get to view the show from the stage itself, since most of the play takes place with audience members seated on three of the four sides of the stage floor. This intimate setting makes you truly feel like you are in the mental institution alongside these patients.

The next showing of 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest' is Nov. 10, 11 and 12 at 7 p.m. and Nov. 13 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $10 each, and due to its adult language, the show is not suitable for young patrons. This is a show you don't want to miss, and one that I would pay double to see again.

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