Tag Archives: Bill Rosenfield

Another America

Another America


Park Theatre

Another America

Another America

Park Theatre

Reviewed – 7th April 2022



“For all its initial bounce, though, this show is slow to catch fire”


Another America by Bill Rosenfield, manages to combine two American obsessions — sport, and road trips. Inspired by Dan Austin’s film, True Fans, Rosenfield’s stage version presents us with three characters, all male, all about to take what they hope will be a life changing trip across America. The plan is to cycle from Los Angeles, on the west coast where they live, to Springfield, Massachusetts, on the east coast, to visit the Basketball Hall of Fame. Dan, the instigator of this madcap idea, is a basketball fanatic. He somehow talks his reluctant brother Jared, and his best friend Clint, into coming with him. Even the team’s failure to raise money to sponsor their trip does not derail Dan’s enthusiasm. He is sure they will manage somehow. And manage they do, though their efforts are hardly inspiring. They are constantly being rescued by the kindness of strangers on basketball courts — and in Subway sandwich shops. Which is not an uncommon American experience, if truth be told.

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Another America begins on an encouraging note. Donning the naïve enthusiasm of a kind that endears all Americans to each other — and to the world for that matter — actors Jacob Lovick (Clint), Rosanna Suppa (Jared) and Marco Young (Dan) are on stage to welcome the audience from the moment they enter the studio space at the Park Theatre. This informal presentation serves the production well as the actors shift between a variety of roles, and locations. Director Joseph Winters keeps the action bouncing along on a makeshift set, much like the basketball that accompanies our fans on their road trip. Occasionally, the audience gets directly involved. The backstage crew, even when invited, are shrewd enough to decline the offer to participate.

For all its initial bounce, though, this show is slow to catch fire. Another America is a better subject for film than the theatre, for the simple reason that, unless you’ve actually been to middle America, it’s a difficult place to imagine. It’s far easier to film this vast nothingness — if your audience is ready to settle in for long periods of riding across land so flat that you can see the curvature of the earth. Looking at you, North and South Dakota. Indiana, Missouri and Pennsylvania may not be quite as prostrate, but they’re still states in “flyover country” which makes their geographical expanse hugely challenging to convey on stage. The energetic charm of the actors is not enough to paint the pictures of emptiness in words that film, unfairly, can.

For the most part, however, Across America hangs on a series of depressing encounters with people left behind and disenfranchised by an illusory American Dream. Playwright Rosenfield accurately captures the bewildered resentment of these folks. But the first half of the Another America is spent wondering why, despite some of the spectacular scenery that the cyclists travel through, most of the action is located on basketball courts, near double wide trailers, farms on the brink of foreclosure, and Subway sandwich shops in the middle of nowhere. Ironically, a detour to Las Vegas results, not in a lost 24 hours of excess, which is kind of experience we have been led to expect from any encounter in the Nevada desert, but with the team getting the hell out of there as quickly as possible. Fair enough. But this hardly makes for good drama.

Right from the start, we know there is going to be a certain amount of rite of passage material in this picaresque tale. A good example is Dan’s reckless tossing of their trip mascot, a basketball, into the Mississippi River, in a moment of existential despair. He then jumps in after it. And his brother jumps in to rescue him, and the ball. Why rescue the ball? It’s not just that it’s a basketball. It is also covered with well meaning advice from all the people who have bailed them out, at one point or another during their trip. It turns out that meeting these people is more important than even reaching the Basketball Hall of Fame, which can only offer them a free soda as acknowledgement of their epic journey. Not surprisingly, the people they meet, with little to offer, and nothing left to lose, turn out to be more generous than corporate sponsors and money making tourist attractions. It’s a sobering conclusion to what might, under different circumstances, and in a different time, be a more uplifting tale.

Another America provides a glimpse into American life that is sadly recognizable, and rather downbeat. For audiences looking for something other than gritty dramas about big city life, this may appeal. But this story is as much a myth buster about road trips and sports fanatics, as it is an inspiring tale about go-getting heroes, despite the delightful energy of its young cast.



Reviewed by Dominica Plummer

Photography by  Piers Foley


Another America

Park Theatre until 30th April


Previously reviewed at this venue:
When Darkness Falls | ★★★ | August 2021
Flushed | ★★★★ | October 2021
Abigail’s Party | ★★★★ | November 2021
Little Women | ★★★★ | November 2021
Cratchit | ★★★ | December 2021
Julie Madly Deeply | ★★★★ | December 2021


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FROM 5th to­ 29th APRIL 2017


Oliver Coopersmith (Netflix’s I-Boy and the lead in forthcoming Sky Atlantic series Tin Star opposite Tim Roth and Christina Hendricks) and Jay Taylor (Donkey Punch, Nell Gwynn and Wolf Hall/Bring up the Bodies) will star in the West End debut of 46 Beacon, playing the roles of Alan and Robert respectively in this coming-of-age and coming-out play set in 1970’s America.

46 Beacon arrives at Trafalgar Studios 2 for a limited season, running from 5 – 29 April 2017, with press night on 10 April, following a short run in 2015 at The Hope Theatre.

Written by Drama Desk and Richard Rodgers Award winner Bill Rosenfield, this memory play is directed by Alexander Lass, with set and costume design by Ruth Hall and produced by Oli Sones and Ed Sinke.

The address is 46 Beacon. The place is 1970s Boston. Alan and Robert spend a balmy July evening hoping for a connection, emotional or physical? 46 Beacon charts their quest in Bill Rosenfield’s fresh, funny and moving script.
Set within a theatrical hotel, Robert has invited Alan back to his room and although they are at different stages of their lives, they each have something the other yearns for. But are they willing to give it?
46 Beacon is the story of that night your life was forever changed.
WARNING: Contains strong sexual content, brief nudity and musical theatre references.


Oliver Coopersmith’s (Alan) stage credits include The Mikvah Project at the Yard Theatre, Dealer’s Choice at the Royal & Derngate Theatre, Once A Catholic at the Tricycle Theatre, Purple Heart at the Gate Theatre, The History Boys at Sheffield Crucible, The Physicists and The Cryptogram both at the Donmar Warehouse, Cause Celebre at the Old Vic, Henry IV Part 2 and The Merry Wives Of Windsor both at Shakespeare’s Globe, The Ones That Flutter at Theatre 503, 2000 Feet Away at the Bush Theatre and Macbeth at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre. Oliver’s screen credits include Netflix’s I-Boy, released last month, the forthcoming Tin Star on Sky Atlantic and Strangeways Here We Come, It’s Alive, Dickensian, The Tracey Ullman Show, Galavant, Hoff The Record, Scrotal Recall, Case Histories & Grandma’s House.

Jay Taylor’s (Robert) stage credits include Accolade at the St. James Theatre, Nell Gwynn at the Apollo Theatre & Shakespeare’s Globe, Wolf Hall & Bringing Up The Bodies for the RSC at the Swan Theatre and Aldwych Theatre, I Heart Peterborough at Soho Theatre, Joe/Boy at The Last Refuge, A Clockwork Orange at the Citizens Theatre, Glasgow, Troilus & Cressida and Titus Andronicus both at Shakespeare’s Globe, SH*TM*X at Trafalgar Studios and The Police at the White Bear Theatre. Jay’s screen credits include A Fantastic Fear of Everything, Donkey Punch, Red Tails, The Rise of the Footsoldier, Britannia, Tennison, Silk, Tea Boys, Midsomer Murders, Misfits, Sirens, Consuming Passion, The Bill, The Fixer, Daphne, Holby City, Mr Wroe’s Virgins & EastEnders.



Tickets for 46 Beacon are available via ATG here