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Covedale’s “Fox on the Fairway” Not Just Par for the Course In Laughs

Review by Doug Iden of Fox on the Fairway: Covedale Theatre
For its second show of the season, the Covedale Theater rolls FOREward into the realm of satire with The Fox on the Fairway. This frenetically paced farce spoofs the Country Club crowd by depicting a desperate attempt by the Quall Valley club to finally beat another club in their annual tournament. The hilarity of the play is driven by a good ensemble cast led by the heads of the two rival clubs played by David Roth and Allen Middleton. They make a significant personal bet on the outcome of the tournament which includes the possible loss of Roth’s wife’s beloved antique store called “The Old Crock” (which elicits many plays on words). Also, in keeping with the sport’s cliché, Middleton wears a series of outlandish, golf-themed sweaters (designed by Caren Young) which the other characters view as hazardous material.

Quail Valley thinks they have lured a ringer for their guaranteed tournament win but their player turns “greencoat” and is now playing for the other club. In desperation, Quail Valley turns to a young doufas, Justin Hicks played by Michael Samuel Donohoe, whom they just hired as an assistant. However, Hicks is actually a scratch golfer who is also in love with fellow employee Louise Heinbedder (played by Emily Mohler). This creates many complications as the characters try to iron out their differences in the labyrinthine plot.

The highlight of the show is the performance of Traci Taylor portraying a randy Quail Valley assistant named Pamela Peabody, reprising a role she played earlier in a local community theater production. In a typical bedroom farce manner, there are many plot twists, misunderstandings and roller coast emotions as they negotiate one hazard after another. As an audience member, you are exhausted by the frenetic pace of the show. Director Bob Brunner choreographs the action well.

With the exception of the final scene, the entire play unfolds in the Quail Valley Tap Room (the classic “nineteenth hole”) which has lots of doors for opening and slamming and a remarkable level of detail in the set. This would be my idea of an elite Country Club setting (if I actually belonged to one). The final scene is the dramatic last hole of the tourney, staged cleverly as a par three green on the course.

Ken Ludwig’s play is a clever spoof with lots of puns, innuendoes, double-entendres (bordering on raunchy) that will keep you laughing all evening. You’ll be hooked by the show.

Do not putter around. Hop in your cart, grab your clubs and enjoy the wackiness of The Fox on the Fairway at the Covedale Theater running from this weekend through November 15.