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Theatre Review: Moon Over Buffalo


Theatre Review: Moon Over Buffalo

Renae Adelsberger


Set in the 1950s, Moon Over Buffalo reveals the backstage of a theatre group during one of their most chaotic days. With the increasing availability of television in the 1950s, tickets to live theatre have plummeted and left the theatre group struggling for money.

Act One sets up the increasingly tangled love relationships that have developed. The main characters are George and Charlotte Hay, who have been married and acting side by side their entire life. They both long to move from theatre to movies. But in a moment of weakness, George has slept with the young actress, impregnating her and causing his wife to seek solace in the arms of their lawyer, Richard. Their daughter has come home to surprise them with her new fiancé, even though she is still in love with the stage manager, Paul. 

As his wife packs up to run away with Richard, George plummets into a drunken stupor. One of the most prominent directors in movies, Frank Capra, announces that he is coming to the matinee performance to scout George and Charlotte for his latest movie. The play is thrown into a new torrent of chaos as they desperately try to sober George up, not realizing that he thinks they are performing a different play. The play unravels as the set is changed from backstage to the front of the theatre as the characters take the stage in the second Act.

The humor of the play depends on the witty, fast-paced lines and slapstick humor. Much of the physical humor demands that the actors be at their best at all times. However, several moments imply sexual relations and the numerous curse words cause this play to be unsuitable for a younger audience. 

Costumes and set design help bring this play to life as the entire stage is transformed to look like we are behind the scenes. There are five doors on the stage, which amplifies the humor of the play as the characters are continuously loosing each other. 

Put some comedy in your weekend and go see the Jackson Theatre Guild’s performance of Moon Over Buffalo by Ken Ludwig. Or if you would like to get involved in JTG, you can audition for their upcoming play, It’s a Wonderful Life. Auditions are October 17-18; call Kristen at 731.427-3200 for more information, or visit their website.

After graduating from Union University, Renae Adelsberger and her husband Kevin decided to make Jackson their home due to their love for their church, nonprofits, local businesses, and abundance of Sonic drive-ins. You can read more from Renae at

Photography by Kevin Adelsberger.