Neighborhood Files

This article was originally printed on the Bethwood, CT Patch website, under Neighborhood Files on October 10, 2010

NEIGHBORHOOD FILES:

ALL SUSAN ALL THE TIME- Woodbridge resident, playwright Susan Cinoman readies her reading.

By Kathleen Schurman, October 10, 2010

When Woodbridge resident Susan Cinoman was growing up, she often wondered if she was adopted. After all, she was brilliantly creative, wildly expressive and constantly pushing the envelope right to the edge, leaving her very normal and ordinary parents shaking their heads, or sometimes, just plain shaking. In the end, it turned out she was adopted, and when she later found her birth family, it was bursting with creative geniuses, just like her. But that’s another story.

This story is about Cinoman’s play, All Me, All the Time, which will have a staged reading in Westport on Oct. 27. The play is loosely based on different aspects of her life, and while wildly funny, is also sharply poignant and introspective. Cinoman has been writing plays for over 20 years.

“When I was young, I had a sketch comedy group called Soubrettes,” Cinoman said. “We traveled and performed everyone. But when I turned 30 I was ready to get married and have a baby and I couldn’t be on the road with the group, so I stayed home and wrote for them.” Which only lasted for so long, because after her first daughter, Gabriella, was born, she was back on the road, baby in tow. Her second daughter, Sabrina, ended her touring days, so she focused on her writing and between 1990 and 1995 had a string of plays produced in New York City. “My mother helped a lot,” she said, “but after she passed away I couldn’t do as much.”

Cinoman said during that time she began to think about preconceived notions she had inherited from her mother about marriage, life and finding someone her mother would approve of, and her angst and musings at the time eventually became the background for All Me, All the Time. “It’s about people looking at the second half of their lives, when their children no longer need them, or at least don’t need them in the same way,” Cinnoman [sic] said. What does Cinoman envision for the second half of her life? “I imagine it will be much like the first half,” she replies, “only I hope I’ll be able to enjoy the successes more fully than before, and that the feelings of desperation and anxiety will have dissipated. All Me, All the Time had its first reading two years ago, where it was greeted with uproarious laughter and excellent reviews, but Cinoman and her husband,  Doug Tenaglia, decided instead of promoting it as a play, they would produce it as a short film and enter it in film competitions. However, the lure of the theater is strong for her, so Cinoman tweaked her work a little more, and now it’s back for another reading.

“I really love Slant of Light Theater Company,” she said. “They want to try it out with a younger cast. Slanted Light is a very young, exciting group interested in working with established and new writers, and I’m looking forward to doing something fresh with them.”

Just the facts:
Slant of Light Theater Company of Norwalk, Connecticut will be presenting a newly revised play reading of Susan Cinoman’s All Me, All the Time on Wednesday, October 27th at 7:00 and 9:00pm. Susan Cinoman, a Connecticut based playwright, will also co-directed the performance with Tara Peterson (Long Wharf Theatre, Harold Prince Productions).

The reading, performed by dynamic actors from the stage, film and television, will take place at Toquet Hall, 58 Post Road East, Westport, Connecticut. The performance is open to the community and free of charge. Two attractive, married couples confront the end of their marriages, in All Me, All the Time, while their daughters engage in bad behavior on the night of high school graduation. The fates of the husbands and wives are revealed in this fast paced exploration of love, commitment and the empty nest on the edge.

Susan Cinoman is a published and produced playwright, director and drama coach whose work has been produced Off-Broadway to critical acclaim. Her play, Fitting Rooms, has been performed internationally. All Me, All the Time was first read at Fairfield Theatre Company, in Fairfield, Connecticut, directed by Anne Keefe (Westport Country Playhouse). Cinoman is also a screenwriter and the co-winner of Best Narrative Film at the New England Film and Video Festival, 2007 and Best Connecticut Filmmaker Award along with her husband, director Doug Tenaglia, for the film Love and Class in Connecticut.

The cast of All Me, All the Time is headlined by Andrea Rosen, New York based comedian, actor and writer, and recently, a regular on Comedy Central’s Michael and Michael Have Issues, in the role of “Pam,” who wants to leave her marriage for life with a painter named “Steve.” Scott Bryce, a former Westport resident, of theater and film fame, reads “Jake,” the aloof, handsome husband who needs a second chance at being himself–with a younger woman. Ed Varley, of Broadway.com and Lifetimes’ Matched in Manhattan reads “Barry,” a slightly disheveled, hard-working guy trying to hold onto his artist wannabe wife. Joanna Keylock, star of the award winning independent film, Love and Class in Connecticut directed by Doug Tenaglia, reads “Sharon,” the quintessential wife and mother about to be replaced by an even younger “other woman.” Sabrina Brier will play the part of a daughter, “Katie” and Gwen Kirkland will read “Taylor,” the daughters.

The Slant of Light Theater Company, located at Buckingham Road, Norwalk, presented its first production in August 2009. Currently SOL is staging a Play Reading Series at Toquet Hall in Westport and the United Church of Christ in Milford. Slant of Light Theater Company is a non-profit company whose mission is to foster thought, promote discussion and challenge assumptions.