By GEORGETTE SPELVIN
Imagine the fun to be had when your heart’s desire is a postage stamp or two. Or three.
So it is in Teresa Rebeck’s “Mauritius,” named after the country in which were issued what became the world’s rarest stamps, because one of the characters in the play inherits them. Maybe. And can get millions of dollars for them. Maybe. And finds the right people to help with the sale. Maybe.
That’s the (twisty) plot in a nutshell. But this really isn’t a play about plot as much as it is about dialogue, which is spoken by five worthy individuals: Rachel Greshes, Liz Keimer, Randy Caldwell, Gordon Ringer and Terrence Girard. That they do as well as they do with said dialogue is a tribute to director Peg Girard as well as to large amounts of talent and touch.Greshes should be on everyone’s casting list, so good is she as Jackie the stamp heir (kind of) and Keimer is effective as her half-sister Mary, who also may be a stamp heir. She really seems to get into her stride in the third act.
Caldwell and Girard make a convincing couple of philatelic con men; Caldwell is nicely serio-comic slick as Dennis and “Sterling” Girard seems to revel in blustery malevolence. He also wears some of the coolest shoes ever in the role. If nothing else, go for the shoes.
Ringer is Philip, the philatelist-dealer with the surprising world view of postal antiques. Maybe. But you have the distinct impression you’re watching a really funny guy and he does a first-class deadpan. Definitely.So what you have is a quintet of fine actors doing kind of “The Sting” with stamps. It’s not as cute, though. This is a big people’s play with lots of f-bombs and a-holes, not to mention things to think about. There really is nothing sweet about it and it sure as hell is not sugary, ever.
More than that would give it away, so find out for yourself. Catch “Mauritius” at MCT through Nov. 6.
SIDE O’GRITS: “Mauritius” runs through Nov. 6 at Melbourne Civic Theatre, 817 E. Strawbridge Ave., Melbourne. Tickets are $26 to $28. Call 321-723- 6935, visit www.mymct.org or click on the ad.