Cul-De-Sac Review – Keeping Up With The Jones

Photo credit Coronado Playhouse
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By Kathy Carpenter

Ashley Graham, Alyssa Anne Austin, and Jena Joyce. Top
Hunter Brown, Bayani Decastro, and Steven Jensen – Bottom
Photo credit Coronado Playhouse


Coronado Playhouse has offered live theatre for 75 years, and for the early part of 2021 will offer shows via Zoom, with hopes to resume live shows later this year.

The Playhouse’s first offering is Cul-De-Sac, a Dark Suburban Comedy, by John Cariani (creator of Almost Maine) starring three couples, as six different people, in different locations being brought together through Zoom. Don’t know how these directors manage to do these shows, but somehow Sean Paul Boyd, worked his magic.

Ashley Graham as Jackie Jones – Hunter Brown as Joe Jones – photo courtesy of Coronado Playhouse

Relatable characters.  Can we ask for more in these unsettling times?  As we all have time to reflect on our lives, perhaps one of these six personalities will resonate with you.

The story takes place on a dead end cul-de-sac, in a nice suburb, in a mid-sized state in a big country. This play is a slice of life tale. Showing three loving couples as they try to identify what exactly makes them happy. The Smiths and Johnson’s are trying to keep up with their perceived image of the perfect couple the Jones’s . While the Jones are all show and dealing with their own issues.

While the show had some issues being new to the Zoom format, and the script featured a lot  of redundant language, but overall i captivated us and gave us a lot to think about. Mainly, what does make us happy? And can we go back to a time we recall as happy?

Alyssa Anne Austin as Diane Johnson and Bayani Deccastro as Brian Johnson- photo courtest of Coronado Playhouse

The play starts as Diane Johnson, played by Alyssa Anne Austin, the over zealous neighbor, the friend trying to make a wrong, right, and lusting after her neighbors lifestyle stops by.  Ashley Graham, displays her talent in the role of Jackie Jones. Jackie, after finally gotten her twin toddlers to sleep and is looking forward to a few minutes of peace. She is ever gracious as she answers the door.

Hunter Brown, plays Joe Jones, the dutiful, perfect husband.With my favorite Bayani Decastro, making his Coronado Playhouse debut, as the unsuspecting husband, of Diane, Brian Johnson. The third couple, Matt, the neighbor who hasn’t been out the house in quite sometime, and suddenly goes out, is played by long time Coronado Playhouse actor, Steven Jensen. His wife Christy, quite surprised by his actions, is played by Jena Joyce. The actors made us believe and  relate to this suburban lifestyle.

Steve Jensen as Matt Smith and Jena Joyce as Christy Smith – photo credit Coronado Playhouse



The show is approximately an hour and thirty minutes with no break.

Can you show support to an industry that has been hit hard by these pandemic times? How many Netflix shows can you watch? And we all need entertainment.

“{Coronado Playhouse rebranded it’s logo and mission. They have joined in solidarity with
San Diego’s larger theatre community.”

Coronado Playhouse strives to reflect and celebrate our world by cultivating a diverse and representative community. CPH is committed to collaborating with all artistic voices, continuing nondiscriminatory practices in our theater operations and presenting stories that showcase the range of the human spirit.

CPH strives to represent artists of all backgrounds and life journeys, and believes that this philosophy will enhance and enlighten the theatre experience for everyone.

In pursuit of keeping theatre alive the theatre is selling gift bags made from their retired main curtain and 75th anniversary calendar. If you aren’t into Zoom think about the gifts or a flat out donation.

If you are a theatre lover a lot of theatres are streaming on Zoom. And all theatres need your donations.


Cul-De Sac                                                       

Photo credit Coronado Playhouse

Streaming Live from January 30 – February 14

1835 Strand Way, Coronado CA 92118-3005

Email: bo*******@co***************.com

photo credit Coronado Playhouse

Phone: (619) 435-4856

Next show

photo credit Coronado Playhouse

Harlem Duet

A Rhapsodic Blues Tragedy

March 19 – April 18 2021

Followed by

Love, Loss, and What I Wore

An intimate collection of stories

April 23 – 25 2021














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