CLOWNS AND A MIME IN TRTC’s QUILT

bowersclownsActor, mime and raconteur Bill Bowers speaks up in IT GOES WITHOUT SAYING at Two River Theater  — while Matthew Gumley and Michael Nathanson continue through February 20 in A THOUSAND CLOWNS.

By TOM CHESEK

With winter regrouping for a second-half assault on the senses, the trick is to stay busy into the lamb-y end of March. It’s a point well taken by the folks at Two River Theater, who are seeing February out with a flurry of activity that includes a current mainstage production, the latest in the Flashes of Brilliance series of solo pieces, and an intimately scaled side project presented at a neighboring Red Bank landmark.

That big-stage offering is a revival of A Thousand Clowns, the 1962 comedy by Herb Gardner that was previewed right here in the pixelated pages of redbankgreen last week. The show stars Michael Nathanson as Uncle Murray — a happy-go-lucky, gainfully unemployed case of arrested development, and semi-legal guardian to his nerdish but savvy nephew Nick. Matthew Gumley, a 14-year-old Broadway trouper who we’ll all probably be seeing a lot more of (and who popped up as an answer on a recent telecast of Jeopardy!), co-stars with a solid cast of character players, among them Tony nominee Lou Liberatore.

Employing the jargon of the want-ads, Star-Ledger reviewer (and dean of Jersey theater crits) Peter Filichia called the show “an ‘excInt oppt’y’ to meet one of Broadway’s first nonconformists,” and capped his enthusiastic take on the show with “everyone’s batting a thousand in A Thousand Clowns.” You can read his freshly posted review here — and you can find much more happening on this side of the river, right after the jump.

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