‘Witches of Ojai’ Cast Confusion

El Vaquero Editor-in-Chief

A death squad, a damsel in distress, four obsessed gamers and lesbian witches?
You would think the four scenarios could never come together.

But indeed they do in the “Lesbian Witches of Ojai,” four one-act plays written and directed by Brian Dembkroski and presented by the GCC Theatre Guild.

Sounds a little like chaos? Yes, it looked a little like that too.

The four plays deal with underlying themes in both a serious and humorous fashion.

However, those themes are a bit hard to grasp, being mixed up in plots that are just a little underdeveloped.
In fact the only play that was actually amusing was the also the title of the show, at the end, “The Lesbian Witches of Ojai.” It was about two overly excited young men, Todd (Jeff Leatherwood) and Colin (Benjamin Magallanes Jr.) who dress up as girls in Shakespearian costumes to crash a lesbian party taking place in a cemetery in Ojai.

While the theme of this play seemed completely lost, it was the only one of the four that was genuinely entertaining. Mixing humor and witty writing, the play touches upon issues of sexuality that are sure to provide a laugh or two.

But that seemed about it. The preceding three plays were hard to understand, and just seemed like lines thrown together in an attempt to tell a story.

The first, “One Bullet,” which was loaded with profanity, dealt with an executioner struggling with his mixed emotions on his job.

He is one of 10 executioners on a death squad, where only one bullet is placed in one gun, so each executioner has a one in 10 chance of being the “murderer.”

Interesting enough, but the play did not seem to really develop the plot further.

The second play, “Something Else,” included two women, Kate (Hannah Stone) and Claire (Meline Tovmasian) struggling to overpower their dependence issues and handle things on their own.
Finally, “Under the Surface,” incorporated the pastime of gaming to unfold the issues of stereotyping and anti-social behavior.

So while all the plays are somewhat entertaining, the themes and concepts are hard to grasp.
In fact, they seem a little thrown together, getting lost in their scripts rather than actually developing stories. in the Studio Theatre.

Tickets are $7 for general admission and $5 for students and seniors. The show runs throuh Nov. 24. For more information or to make reservations, call ext. 5618.