Don’t miss your chance to catch one of the final performances of “The Cottage,” one of the funniest shows to hit Queens all year.
In playwright Sandy Rustin’s original comedy, at the Astoria Performing Arts Center, any doubt that we’re deep in Noël Coward territory simply vanishes after a very pregnant character is handed a scotch to sip while she enjoys long drags from her cigarette.
It is oh so civilized, and oh so very funny.
The play, set in the English countryside in 1923, concerns the various infidelities of three couples, Beau and his wife, Marjorie; Clarke and his wife, Sylvia; and Dierdre and her newly divorced ex-husband, Richard. For these six, love resembles a sort of game with winners and losers, but once the truth begins to unravel just who earns a check in their win column becomes a little more muddled. Beau and Clarke are brothers. Beau is having an affair with Sylvia and Dierdre. Clarke has been carrying on with Marjorie. And Richard, may or may not be a serial killer.
Got that? No matter.
As in the best of Coward, the setup is the least important component of the evening. What matters is the sparkling dialogue and witty give-and-take between the characters.