‘One Slight Hitch’ shows deeper side to screwball comedy

Joe Candelora (AEA) will portray Doc Coleman in GVT’s production of “One Slight Hitch” (Photo courtesy Greenbrier Valley Theatre)
Joe Candelora (AEA) will portray Doc Coleman in GVT’s production of “One Slight Hitch” (Photo courtesy Greenbrier Valley Theatre)
Megan Godin will portray P.B. Coleman in GVT’s production of “One Slight Hitch” (Photo courtesy Greenbrier Valley Theatre)
Megan Godin will portray P.B. Coleman in GVT’s production of “One Slight Hitch” (Photo courtesy Greenbrier Valley Theatre)

Greenbrier Valley Theatre (GVT), the State Professional Theatre of West Virginia, proudly presents Lewis Black’s “One Slight Hitch.” This hilarious farce runs on Oct. 29 and Nov. 3-5 and 10-12 at 7:30 p.m. and a matinee performance Nov. 5 at 2:30 p.m.

Tickets are $30 for general admission, $27 for seniors and $20 for children/students. For tickets or more information, call GVT’s Box Office at 304-645-3838 or visit www.gvtheatre.org.

It’s Courtney Coleman’s wedding day, and her mother has been busy making sure everything is perfect. Just when it seems like things are going smoothly, Courtney’s less-than-impressive ex-boyfriend stops by unannounced, bringing chaos and comedy guaranteed to keep you laughing.

In acting, like any other profession, experience is always the best teacher. Joe Candelora, who portrays Doc Coleman, has just that, with a career that has spanned over 40 years. Last seen in GVT’s 2016 production of “You Can’t Take It with You,” Candelora has worked in all different forms of theatre, from tragedies such as “A Lion in Winter” to Neil Simon’s comedy “Barefoot in the Park.”

While Candelora admits that he enjoys no particular genre more than the other, this comedy has been a lot of fun. Working alongside Artistic Director Cathey Sawyer and the rest of this small but talented cast has been exciting for GVT’s regular guest. The show has been especially entertaining because he didn’t expect such a light-hearted comedy from a comedian known for his biting sarcasm.

“The beauty of this show is there are moments of door slamming farce, screwball comedy, sophisticated high comedy and touching tender moments,” Candelora said.

The experience Candelora brings to this production is very different from that of Megan Godin, who portrays Doc’s 16-year-old daughter P.B. Much of Godin’s career has focused on musical and children’s theater; this is her first farce. The young actress is used to rehearsing lyrics and choreography, and it’s been great fun trying something new. Like Candelora, Godin just learned of Black’s work as a playwright, but she sees a lot of his well-known comedic style in the upcoming production.

“’One Slight Hitch’ is somewhat more subdued than what someone very familiar with Black’s work would expect,” Godin said, “but it’s still very much his style – the commentary, use of language and characters at their wits’ end.”

Godin and Candelora have noted that this show is more than just a comedy. In Black’s own unique way, he tells a story with room for both tears and laughter, and a touching message of love and family hidden behind the absurdity.

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