Home / Events / Theater / I Love to Eat

I Love to Eat

REBECCA JACOBSON
7:30 pm Tuesdays-Sundays, 2 pm Saturdays-Sundays, noon Thursdays through Feb. 10., Friday February 01 | $39-$65.
Gerding Theater
128 NW 11th Ave.
 
Opera music booms and steam spills out from beneath the giant onstage refrigerator as I Love to Eat begins. As the song builds and steam obscures the floor, James Beard (Rob Nagle) strides out of the fridge. Dressed in striped silk pajamas, he chuckles as an unremitting cascade of rose petals falls from above. “Moderation!” he roars. “I’m against it!” Yet for such a grandiose proclamation, I Love to Eat, directed by Jessica Kubzansky, feels less like a rich meal than a scattered sampler of tasty but underwhelming tidbits. James Still’s chatty script jumps between informal confessional and re-enactments of Beard’s 1940s cooking show, with the celebrated chef recounting culinary and childhood reminiscences, preparing mayonnaise and chopping parsley for canapes and, in some brief spots, revealing and then brushing off stories of loneliness and unrequited love. Though peppered with a few lovely moments—the Portland-born Beard recalls digging for razor clams in Gearhart, for example—this Portland Center Stage production neither digs enough into Beard’s underlying melancholy nor sufficiently plays up his convivial wit. Given the bony and episodic script, Nagle’s performance mostly impresses, and he endears himself to the audience with knowing glances and dramatic flourishes of the arm. But many of the lines are so slick or painstakingly choreographed they fail to elicit more than a polite giggle, and nothing can save Nagle in the incongruous, kiddie scenes with a bovine hand puppet. At one point, Beard fields a call from a frazzled home cook in Kansas. He encourages her to pour the disaster down the sink. “That’s the way it is in the kitchen,” he says. “Sometimes it all goes boom.” But that’s the problem with Still’s unfocused script—though it carries on at a gentle simmer, it never makes much of a bang.

Where: Gerding Theater
Phone: 445-3700
Address: 128 NW 11th Ave.
Website: pcs.org

 
 
Other events in Theater

Dark Ecologies

Tuesday, Mar 03, 2015
The first thing you see when you walk into Bullseye’s three-artist show, Dark Ecologies, is Carolyn Hopkins’ beautiful and disturbing sculpture, Cascade. It depicts a strung-up dog w ...
Bullseye Projects 300 NW 13th Ave. Web | Map

Dark Paradise

Tuesday, Mar 03, 2015
Ecologically themed art tends to be dull and sanctimonious, but not so in the hands of Wesley Younie. His idylls of environmental paradise lost abound with equal parts whimsy and intelligence. In the ...
Mark Woolley Gallery @ Pioneer 700 SW 5th Ave., 3rd floor, Pioneer Place Mall Portland Web | Map

Kevin Kadar and Takahiko Hayashi

Tuesday, Mar 03, 2015
Froelick offers a strong pairing of shows for February. A standout in Kevin Kadar’s show, Portals and Puzzles, is the acrylic painting Firewall. With its flame-licked, scorched-earth l ...
Froelick Gallery 714 NW Davis St. Web | Map
Also At Gerding Theater

Other Desert Cities

Tuesday, Mar 03, 2015

Portland Center Stage presents a drama by Jon Robin Baitz about a wealthy family with a thorny past—because we've never seen any of those sorts of people onstage before.

7:30 pm Tuesdays-Sundays, 2 pm Saturdays-Sundays and noon Thursdays through March 22 | $39-$69
Gerding Theater 128 NW 11th Ave. Web | Map

Threesome

Tuesday, Mar 03, 2015

It only takes about 10 minutes for the first penis to appear. But that’s hardly the most shocking moment in Threesome, a richly scripted world-premiere producti ...

7:30 pm Tuesdays-Sundays (excluding Feb. 8, 22 and 24 and March 3 and 8); 2 pm select Saturdays-Sundays; noon select Thursdays. Through March 8 | $20-$55
Gerding Theater 128 NW 11th Ave. Web | Map

Other Desert Cities

Wednesday, Mar 04, 2015

Portland Center Stage presents a drama by Jon Robin Baitz about a wealthy family with a thorny past—because we've never seen any of those sorts of people onstage before.

7:30 pm Tuesdays-Sundays, 2 pm Saturdays-Sundays and noon Thursdays through March 22 | $39-$69
Gerding Theater 128 NW 11th Ave. Web | Map
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
comments powered by Disqus
 

Web Design for magazines

Close
Close
Close