Review "Ghostbox": Damned Haunting!

Infusion Theatre presents

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GHOSTBOX
At Apollo Studio Theatre, 2540 N. Lincoln
Written by Randall Colburn
Directed by Mitch Golob
September 30th thru October 31st
Thursdays, Friday, Saturdays at 8:30
Special performance Sunday the 31st at 8:30

Ticket Information
Running time:  45 minutes with no intermission

Reviewed by Katy Walsh

What really frightens people this time of year?  Blood-sucking, green-faced, broom-sticking apparitions conjured up by generations of folklore?  Or someone you love unpopping the cork on your bottle full of demons and experiencing your dark side?  Infusion Theatre presents the world premiere of GHOSTBOX, written by Randall Colburn.  A wife and husband are separated by death.  Through a transistor radio, she tries to communicate with him in the afterlife.  He's in a bad place.  She wants to save him... from himself.  He doesn't feel worthy of love or redemption.  He is boxed in by fright.  She takes the lid off. Premiering in October with a title of the spookhouse variety, GHOSTBOX would appear to be in the horror genre.  In fact, it is a dark romance about a love that lives on past the sadly-ever-after-after.GHOSTBOX is about the monsters that live in your head, not under your bed!

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Directed by Mitch Golob, the stage is boxlike with a table and a single swinging bulb.  The backdrop switches between being a screen for projections and a transparency silhouetting death.  The projections are a mixture of past and present clips of life interspersed with biblical quotes.  The story unfolds by connecting the eerie snippets with the 3-D activity.  Hauntingly, Victoria Gilbert (wife) whispers in a shaky-'Blair Witch'-I'm-looking-into-some-scary-shit camera work.  Gilbert is disturbing in a desperate, crazy way to find her husband.  Kevin Crispin (husband) is a mess!   Crispin is the epitome of being in hell.  He is at the bottom of the box.  Dejected, he shuns his beloved wife with cruel chants of 'you don't love me.'  This gloomy presence is a poignant contradiction to the projections of a smiling-frolicking guy on the beach.  Michael Coale (shadow figure) looms in the background like the ghost of Christmas future.  In a shiver-inducing scene, Coale and Crispin collide in a shadow box fusion of death images.

Ghostbox (4) - Photo by Kevin Viol.JPG

Usually, I produce reviews within 24-hours of seeing a show.  GHOSTBOX required several days of contemplation.  It's more like 'performance art' than a 'play.'  It's abstract and thought-provoking.  I went in with a preconceived notion of an ankle-grabbing, ghost-booing, haunted house.  I left not frightened of the underworld but perplexed of the beyond-world.   Death is a continuation of misery?  WTF?  That's a terrifying thought!  What is more horrific than your worst suppressed fears about yourself?  Thinking someone you love believes they are true!  That unmasked belief sends you straight to hell! GHOSTBOX is damned haunting!  The night terrors will continue long after the show as you exorcise your own demons.     

A man not frightened easily by internal or external monsters, Bill describes the show with 'what's the point?'

Production photos courtsey of Kevin Viol

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