For Sale: "I forgot to bake the cookies" and other real-estate disasters
Image courtesy The Moving Company
None of the suggestions were what the space actually is: the Lab Theater in the North Loop. During the show, Richards (Luverne Seifert) and his "number two" Margie (Sarah Agnew) do their best figurative tap dance (and, later, a literal one) to unload the space.
All of this gives the performers, who are joined by Nathan Keepers (also the director) and Chrissy Taylor, a chance to deal in the type of absurdity that is the Moving Company's forte.
Richards is at the end of his rope: deeply in debt, his car repossessed, and his fourth marriage in its dying days. His air of desperation fuels the humor here, as the not-at-all-well-honed sales pitch goes off the rails amid the spaces within the Lab.
Margie is clearly in over her head, trying to do the right thing at every turn but largely failing. It could be forgetting the expected cookies or apologizing for making cold calls after 11 p.m.
Together, Seifert and Agnew create a terrific double act as they use the nooks and crannies of the space to build the humor. They get a major assist from Keepers, who plays a woman who has been squatting there (the open floor plan is perfect for a trendy condo) and later Gavin, the Lab's caretaker. In this role, he arrives in darkness, propelling his way down from a platform while pretending to be a great underwater explorer.
From there, the deathly shy character warms up as he spins a variety of tales about the history of the space, such as how they once built a massive ship inside and then launched it to the nearby Mississippi River.
Keepers built the piece, along with fellow former Jeune Luners Steve Epp and Dominique Serrand, and the work has plenty of anarchic energy -- a constant threat that it is all going to collapse under its own absurd weight. It never does, which makes For Sale a real theatrical delight.
700 N. First St., Minneapolis
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