- Acacia Theatre Company describes itself as a group that
offers plays of substance and moral fiber.
This philosophy will attract some patrons and serve as
a turnoff to others, but I find that their choices are wise
ones with broad appeal to anyone.
the blatantly religious ones, such as “Fish Eyes,” based
on the story of Peter and his brother Andrew’s call to
follow Christ, is a delightful recounting of two fishermen’s
halting decision to follow this amazing man called Jesus. It
is a very funny and very human story, which anyone can relate
to. It is really a story about any major decisions one makes
and the reasons for making them.
by playwrights Ted Swartz and Lee Eshleman and directed by
Janet Bouman Peterson, the entire cast consists of the first
two disciples chosen by Jesus. All of the other characters are
imagined. A talented violinist, Therese Goode, provides the
transitions between the 14 scenes that tell their story.
dialogue is clever and full of allusions to the Bible,
especially the gospels. David Shapiro and Matt Koester are
both master actors, and they capture our interest immediately
with their brotherly sparring, their befuddlement, and their
earthiness. We love these two guys and are reminded of people
we know who would have had the same reaction to some of
Jesus’ teachings and been just as astonished as they were
when they were chosen to follow this strange, charismatic man.
As for fully understanding some of Jesus’ teachings, there
are hundreds of scholars still working on that little project,
and often fighting over various interpretations at that.
stage has minimal props - a canoe, a net, a suitcase, and a
board and a couple stools to suggest the Last Supper. It’s
enough to set the various scenes. It’s amazing how real it
all seems. The talented duo should be given credit for
engaging us so completely.
walking on water, the Sermon on the Mount, the miracle at the
wedding at Cana, Peter’s denial, the multiplication of the
loaves and fishes, the triumphant parade on Palm Sunday -
these and many more familiar scenes are included, but with a
unique twist - all seen through Peter and Andrew’s eyes, two
ordinary fishermen who never fully understood what hit them
when a man on shore told them to cast their net on the other
side of the boat and miracles started to happen.
can’t recommend this show more strongly. You will love every
minute of it.
of what you believe, the Bible story is part of our culture
and Christianity in its various sects, a strong tradition in
this country and one that many ascribe to.
Eyes” has shows at 8 p.m. Friday, 4 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m.
Sunday at the Todd Wehr Auditorium on the Concordia University
Wisconsin campus, 12800 N. Lake Shore Drive, Mequon. Call
1-414-744-5995 or visit www.acaciatheatre.com