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Love was in the air – sort of – during the performance of My Ridiculous Valentine at No Square Theatre 

Story and photos by DIANNE RUSSELL

Of course, any play celebrating Valentine’s Day must include songs like “Love is in the Air,” but how often do you see a grown man dressed up as cupid? Only at No Square Theatre, I suspect.

Friday night’s performance of My Ridiculous Valentine was hilarious from the opening song, “Love is in the Air,” performed by Joe Lauderdale in full cupid regalia, to the last note of the finale. The play is described as “A ridiculous cabaret. Because

not every romance is pretty. Some are pretty funny.” The brilliant cast proved that to be true. 

Love was cupid

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Joe Lauderdale as Cupid

My Ridiculous Valentine was created and directed by Bree Burgess Rosen and Roxanna Ward (who had a delightful repartee with the audience while at the piano), and included a deliciously talented cast – Eric Anderson, Rebecca Butkivich, Claire Day (McClug), Kelly Goldstein, Gary Greene, Rob Harryman, Pat Kollenda, Joe Lauderdale, Marc Marger, Kristen Matson, Steven McIntosh, and Ella Wyatt – who gave the audience both the traditional and the flip side of love.

Love was Pat

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Pat Kollenda reprises “I’m Tired” from the movie Blazing Saddles

Fellow writer from Stu News, Marrie Stone, said, “No Square Theatre is Laguna’s hidden gem. How have I lived here 20 years without knowing much about it?! And My Ridiculous Valentine was the perfect way to discover it. The humor and talent of the cast had me laughing all night. And the intimacy of the venue made me feel part of the action.” 

Love was Bree

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Bree Rosen sings “Making Love Alone”

Marrie continues, “From the moment Roxanna Ward walked on stage, I rarely stopped laughing. Pat Kollenda’s ‘I’m Tire’” is still on autoplay in my head, and – three days later – continues to make me smile. There’s nothing better than laughing over love, sex, and romance. From stalking to masochism to ‘self-love,’ no topic was off the table, and each one was funnier than the last. Rated IM – for the most immature of mature audiences.”

Love was group

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Cast during finale and bows

Gail Landau, founder of Catmosphere Laguna, said of the performance, “Bree Rosen and her troupe are so talented and such a delight to watch, as well as hear. The show is as much visual as it is musical”.

My Ridiculous Valentine was a ruckus – irreverently unromantic – and ridiculously entertaining. 

No Square Theatre is located at 384 Legion, (949) 715-0333.

The next production is Lagunatots, which will run from March 15-24.

For more information, visit www.nosquare.org.