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Queens Chronicle

What you’ll miss when ears are closed

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Posted: Thursday, January 31, 2013 10:30 am | Updated: 10:39 am, Fri Feb 8, 2013.

[Because of winter storm Nemo the show has been postponed from Feb. 8 to Feb. 15.]

It’s a familiar plot — a recently dumped boyfriend goes on a quest through his little black book to find out what went wrong.

The scenario plays through in the book “High Fidelity,” which eventually became the movie with John Cusack as the floundering record shop owner and lousy boyfriend.

“We took that one section of ‘High Fidelity’ and made it a lot more exaggerated and explored what you could learn from [the exes],” said Michael Brody, writer and director of the professional show, “Survey,” which will be performed at the Little Theater in Long Island City on Feb. 15. [Because of winter storm Nemo the show has been postponed from Feb. 8 to Feb. 15.]

The LaGuardia Performing Arts Center awarded Brody a Lab 101 grant — which aims to present works in progress — to produce the free show. If Friday’s show goes well, Brody hopes more will be on the horizon.

The plot is an idea many men and women on the rebound from a serious relationship have probably played with.

“The script is based on my life. I was recently out of a relationship where I knew I had done wrong and it occurred to me to ask my ex-girlfriends,” Brody said at a rehearsal on Saturday morning at the LaGuardia Performing Arts Center. “But I realized I might have the answers to the problems. For the sake of life it seemed like a bad idea to actually go back and ask.”

But in “Survey” the main character, talk show host Tom Lawrence, played by Astoria-based actor and screenplay writer Sergio LoDolce, plunges into the past without reservation.

Lawrence has all the swag and self confidence of a Conan O’Brien or Jay Leno. On the job he’s accustomed to asking superficial questions of celebrities, but not needing to truly listen to the answers.

That doesn’t translate well into his personal life and when his fiancee unexpectedly packs up her bags and kicks him to the curb, the reason why escapes him.

He cooks up a brilliant plan to ask his three most significant ex-girlfriends what went wrong between them, beginning with his high school sweetheart, Angie, who is now married and mother of a two-year-old.

“It’s eight years in the past,” said actress Mandy Striph. “The hurt isn’t there and there’s sort of the possibility they could be friends.”

He doesn’t get off so easy with the other two in this romantic comedy/drama.

“He’s like a truck going though roadblocks, one after the other until there’s an abrupt stop — until his arrogance is broken down,” LoDolce said.

With each meeting, Lawrence learns a little more about listening and how by doing so maybe he could have been a better partner.

“It sends a simple message: If you want a good Valentine’s Day you should listen. Open up your ears,” Brody said.


When: Feb. 8 at 8 p.m.

Where: Little Theater at LaGuardia Community College, 31-10 Thomson Ave., Long Island City

Tickets: Free

(718) 482-5151, lagcc.cuny.edu/lpac/

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