The War Party

Vincent Delaney’s politically driven play is wonderfully atypical of political theater. While so many of his contemporaries have taken on the simple task of Bush-bashing, Delaney has written a much more complex story, providing insights into politics as both folly and inspiration. After losing her re-election campaign, Senator Laura Smith (Shellie Shulkin) meets one of her enthusiastic young volunteers, Jessie (Shanna Allman). Though she hasn’t had a drink in 18 years, Laura opens a bottle of champagne, which flows freely as the inexperienced 22-year-old tells her why she lost. Sulkin has been cast perfectly as the brassy senator, the sole female Republican in the old boys’ club, and Allman is a pleasure to watch as the star-struck yet astute volunteer. Jim Dean also makes a strong appearance as Senator Smith’s vision of FDR. Director Rita Giomi didn’t miss a single opportunity to bring out the humor of Delaney’s script, yet the production retains the play’s sincere sense of hope. Presented by Seattle Public Theater. BRENT ARONOWITZ 7:30 p.m. Thurs.-Sat., 2 p.m. Sun. Ends Oct. 19.

Thursdays-Saturdays, 7:30 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m. Starts: Sept. 25. Continues through Oct. 19, 2008

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