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THEATER BEAT

Odessa Stages a Down 'Elevator'

October 07, 1994|F. KATHLEEN FOLEY

Trap a battling son and father in an office building elevator over a long weekend and what do you get? A mild case of claustrophobia, but not necessarily a play.

Walter Bagot plays the son Eddie, opposite Burton Sharp as his dad, Art. A middle-aged Peter Pan who is still trying to shake off the effects of his father's toxic parenting, Eddie yearns to confront Art with his true feelings. Art, still brutalized by his own father's abandonment in childhood, and also by his traumatic experiences as a World War II fighter pilot, just wants to let the sleeping dogs of the past lie.

Bagot, who also wrote the piece, displays the heavy hand of an armchair psychologist as his one-dimensional characters struggle toward "closure"--and a painfully predictable denouement that sends this "Elevator" plummeting to the cellar.

* "Elevator Music," Odessa Theatre, 10426 Magnolia Blvd., North Hollywood. Fridays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 7 p.m. Ends Oct. 16. $12-$15. (818) 752-0059. Running time: 2 hours.

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