The Little Theatre of Alexandria's presentation of "Never Too Late", set in Anytown, USA, is a light comedy that brings to the stage the all-too-familiar problems that arise when one gets too comfortable with the status quo.
Harry Lambert, played by Frank Butler, has his life turned upside down when his wife, Edith, announces that she is expecting a baby. The twist is that this otherwise happy events catches them smack in the midst of middle age. Compounding the problems is that his daughter and son-in-law, whom Harry can't stand, live at home.
The prospect of a new family member throws everyone off course and forces them to reexamine their roles in the family.
The cast gives a strong and consistent performance with the most amusing character being Butler in the role of the father, Harry, who captures the ridiculous side of human nature superbly. Lois Darling plays Harry's wife Edith with a perfect sense of humility. In the roles of the daughter and son-in-law are Anne Bulzalski and Steve Skardon, both lively and sincere.
The set, a living room easily found on any average suburban street, successfully creates the right atmosphere for this human comedy.
All this being said, however, there is one drawback that soon becomes obvious: "Never Too Late" is clearly dated when it comes to the relationship between the sexes. The treatment of the role of the women in the family at times borders on being degrading rather than amusing--at least to my taste.
When Edith, told to take it easy by her doctor, cannot cook dinner, Harry orders his daughter into the kitchen where she belongs, a throwback to another perspective (the play was written in 1957). The producers, however, explain that it was chosen for an older audience. Perhaps they won't mind.
The Little Theatre is in Old Town and it's a lovely spot to visit. Through July 2, The Little Theatre Of Alexandria, 600 Wolfe St., Alexandria. For more information, call 683-0496. Other Events:
* "Of the Black Experience", an art exhibit at the Arlington Arts Center. For more information, call 524-1494.
* Bluegrass music at the Lubber Run Amphitheatre. For more information, call 558-2165.
* Lithographs by Marcia Evert at the County Administration Building, Leesburg. For more information, call 703-777-0252.
* Fairfax Symphony Orchestra performs "Hello Symphony" at Reston's Lake Anne. For more information, call 821-8118.