Fall in love with Not Another Theater Company

“I Love You Because” 
Presented by Not Another Theater Company
Location 528 Hiawatha Blvd. Syracuse
When  Feb. 3 -18
Tickets $25 / $35 Dinner & a Show
GRR Review By  Zoha Arshad

Almost all of us have fallen in love, gotten dumped, had a messy breakup and perhaps even been cheated on by the scumbag of the person we think we love. All we need is the perfect rebound; a short, oversexed period of our lives where we throw all caution to the wind. Or perhaps, we want to win the scumbag back? Either way there are rules to adhere to, and games to play because as we all know, love is never a simple thing.

“I Love You Because,” is a musical romantic comedy set in New York City (complete with bartender therapists), and tries and addresses all love and angst related issues. It is performed by the actors of “Not Another Theater Company,” in their first musical for 2012.

Jeff (Maxwell Anderson) and Diana (Jennifer Pearson) explain they are just friends in NATC's I Love You Because (photo by Amelia Beamish)

The story centers around two bothers, Jeff (Maxwell Anderson) and Austin (Alex Cupelo), and two friends, Marcy (Kasey Mchale) and Diana (Jennifer Pearson). Austin wants his lying, cheating girlfriend back, but she won’t give him the time of day, and Marcy gets dumped by her boyfriend of two years. Yes, you guessed it. They’re the main couple of the musical.

Austin meets Marcy through a Jewish dating website (he’s not Jewish and neither is she), and the four of them try and figure out love, commitment and the usual complications that come along with it.

I must say I enjoyed Diana and Jeff’s characters even more than the main protagonists’. Not Another Theater Company specializes in comedy.

Jeff’s portrayal as a simple, word-jumbling guy was hilarious. He (Anderson) carried the show through, and hit the punch line at the right moment every time. His voice was strong, and its inflections deep. For a musical to portray emotion, it is imperative for the singer’s voice to match the expression on his face, and the circumstances of the play around him or her, and Jeff’s character pulled through consistently. His partner in crime, Diana (Pearson) delivered a top-notch comic performance with a stellar musical voice.

There was never really a boring moment when these two came on stage, and one could see the crowd in stitches over something the duo said or did. Whether it was Jeff losing his cool at Austin for being a whipped, pathetic piece of humanity, or Diana working out mathematical calculations, for the perfect rebound time (which is six months by the way) for Marcy, they had the crowd laughing. Austin and Marcy’s characters definitely had more heavy emotional lifting to do.

“I Love You Because…” has funny jokes, the one liners that zing, and hilarious rounds of Jeff and Diana bickering and trying out different bedroom positions. This show is a fun night at the theater.

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