The folk tale vignette is one of the high points of “Crystal Creek Motel,” a spotty and overlong but occasionally delightful world premiere from Flying V Theatre. Consisting of 12 scenes written and staged by seven directors including showrunner Lee Liebeskind, the production conjures incidents that take place in the eponymous hostelry’s Room 109 over the course of a year. The puppet- and mask-infused folk tale episode delivers poignant lyricism, as directed and choreographed by Robert Bowen Smith, with Paz López as the storyteller. But other installments work in very different modes. Romance, loopy murder, slapstick hot sex, a grief-steeped haunting, professional wrestling and other comic and dramatic happenings, often involving minimal dialogue, make Room 109 a candidate for a “Do Not Disturb” sign the size of a Route 66 billboard.
Several of the most satisfying scenes in “Crystal Creek Motel,” are wordless, or near-wordless, and set to mood-propelling indie rock-inflected music. Dan Mori supplies a droll sketch about a stressed-out traveler (the compelling Natalie Cutcher) who dances her way to optimism. In an amusing and ingeniously choreographed comic-erotic yarn by Tonia Sina (a leading figure in the “intimacy direction” field) and Jason Schlafstein (Flying V’s producing artistic director), two near strangers (Cutcher and James Finley) fumble through a breathless hookup that has a fourth-wall-puncturing twist.
Two dream ballets surge with poignancy that benefits from Kristin A. Thompson’s evocative lighting. A portrait of a woman reeling from romantic nostalgia (directed and choreographed by Smith and featuring Linda Bard, Momo Nakamura and Quincy Vicks) weaves in stylized, everyday movement. A glimpse of siblings separated by death (directed by Liebeskind, choreographed by Tiffanie Horner, and featuring Finley and Jordan Clark Halsey) deploys balletic partnering.
Not all the segments in “Crystal Creek Motel” are successful. Among other failures, a drug-binge chronicle (by Kelly Colburn, featuring Madeline Key) is boring and overextended. A sentimental New Year’s Eve episode (by Liebeskind, written with Nerissa Hart) is unconvincing. Overall, with a 2½ -hour running time, the show often feels self-indulgently long-winded.
Knitting these checkered scenes, Jos. B. Musumeci Jr.’s pitch-perfect set incorporates some delightful surprises. And the drama is framed by a beautifully crafted tale that features two members of the motel’s cleaning staff. The rapport between the women (Julieta Gozalo and the marvelous Erin Denman) evolves in touching ways, and Denman’s exasperated expressions are superb. Let’s get these two hospitality professionals a gig at a Ritz-Carlton.
Crystal Creek Motel, by Flying V Theatre. Written and directed by Kelly Colburn, Lee Liebeskind, Daniel Mori, Jason Schlafstein, Tonia Sina, Robert Bowen Smith and Aria Velz. With additional writing by KJ Moran and Nerissa Hart. Assistant directors: Hart, Madeleine Regina and Ruben Vellekoop; costume design, Brittany Graham; sound, Neil McFadden; props and masks, Andrea “Dre” Moore; dramaturgy, Susanna Pretzer; fight and intimacy director, Jonathan Ezra Rubin. 2 hours 30 minutes. $20-$40. Through Nov. 2 at the Silver Spring Black Box, 8641 Colesville Rd., Silver Spring, Md. flyingvtheatre.com.