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LAST CHANCE

Theater

February 13, 2003|Reed Johnson

"Bus Stop": Director Sabin Epstein's faithful and tenderly nuanced production of William Inge's underperformed Corn Belt classic draws us into the fleeting warmth of this old-fashioned, solidly crafted work about four motley passengers stranded by a blizzard at a Kansas crossroads cafe. It benefits from a core of note-perfect performances by the ensemble, including Ben Messmer as a lovesick cowboy, Abby Craden as his nightclub chanteuse love object and, especially, Mark Bramhall's crusty old Virgil, the cowboy's spiritual mentor and father surrogate.

-- Reed Johnson

Ends Friday at Marsee Auditorium, El Camino College, 16007 Crenshaw Blvd., Torrance. (800) 832-ARTS.

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