Round House Theatre marks its return to more engaging, contemporary material with a balanced ensemble performance of Melissa James Gibson’s This, a romantic comedy-drama for grieving grownups. Todd Scofield brings a yearning strength to the role of Tom, new stay-at-home dad and craftsman, while Will Gartshore is charmant as Jean-Pierre, the hunky French physician. Michael Glenn wisely does not overplay the (many) annoying sides of the feckless Alan. James Kronzer’s double revolve keeps the play’s many changes of scene moving quickly and smoothly. Directory Ryan Rilette does well by keeping Lise Bruneau pinned to the floor for her late monologues as Jane; seated on a step, her grief and pain are the more powerful.
- This, by Melissa James Gibson, directed by Ryan Rilette, Round House Theatre, Bethesda, Md.