"Waiting For Grace" Probes And Delights At The Odyssey

Watch successful, smart, independent, quirky Grace discover herself through trying to find “the one”

Playwright Sharon Sharth tells the story of Grace, a woman in her forties who desperately wants to find a man, settle down and have a baby. "Waiting for Grace" is played at The Odyssey Theatre from November 10th to December 11th, on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays at 8 P.M. and on Sundays at 2 P.M. This play touches on the struggle modern women face to balance a successful career with falling in love, getting married and starting a family.

A wonderfully directed and produced show, it features six actors in the span of 120 minutes. The "Waiting for Grace" cast is a rather impressive one, as it features Todd Babcock; three-time Dramalogue award winner Pamela Dunlap; TV, movie and Broadway actress Lily Knight; Emmy award winner Jeff LeBeau; Bob Telford; and finally, a Broadway World Best Leading Actress award nominee, Sharon Sharth. Sharth wrote this play based on her own life and her own experiences with men and trying to get married. Through the play we watch all the ways in which the main character Grace, a quirky, fiery, passionate, and smart woman goes about trying to achieve her goal of marriage, which also include hiring a relationship coach (Pamela Dunlap). In the end however, she finds out how sometimes the best things happen when you stop looking for them.

In a time when most shows and plays are about politics and corruption, it was refreshing to see "Waiting for Grace" as it emphasized a subject which less frequently addressed in theatre, sexism and double standards between the two genders. More than once, the relationship coach advises Grace (Sharon Sharth) to keep her mouth closed, let the man be dominant and say "yes" to everything. This advice, while frustrating to more progressive audience members, is an ideology that is still prominent. "It was a beautiful production and a very refreshing and pleasant pro-feminist play," said two female audience members.

Going along with the subject of female empowerment, the "Waiting for Grace" team is holding a special "Ladies Night Out" on Thursday nights after the show. Audiences are invited to join the cast of the play after the show for drinks and the opportunity to meet Mark Bryan of "Oprah" Fame. The production does a successful job of getting its audience to think about gender structure, as well as of entertaining them for all 120 minutes of its duration.

"Waiting for Grace" is running at the Odyssey Theatre (2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd.) through December 11th. Tickets start at $35. For more information, visit: https://www.plays411.com/newsite/show/play_info.asp?show_id=4500

Contact contributor Lucia Nikolaou Damaskinaou at nikolaou@usc.edu

Correction: This article previously named Christopher Pennock as a member of the cast. He has been replaced by Bob Telford.