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THEATER BEAT

'Daughters' Bows at the Hudson

March 18, 1994|RICHARD STAYTON | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

There is one hypnotic performance in "Daughters." Unfortunately for everyone else involved with the Los Angeles premiere of John Morgan Evans' excessively loquacious soap opera at the Hudson Theatre, this star never utters a comprehensible word and is only seen briefly during Act I. Confused, self-absorbed, utterly peripheral to the plot, Connie Sawyer's Old World grandmother mirrors our confusion. We can identify with her bafflement while her squabbling Italian American descendants stereotypically trespass on John Patrick Shanley's turf.

Director Mark W. Travis strains to make convincing the family's schizophrenic behavior, but the sentimentality only increases our envy of the lucky grandmother who dies between acts.

* "Daughters," Hudson Theatre, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood. Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m. Ends April 17. $18. (213) 660-TKTS. Running time: 2 hours.

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