It would be easy to dismiss Mothers and Sons as just another AIDS play from Terrence McNally.
But Terrence McNally is not just any other playwright. He is the great American gay playwright. He's the Arthur Miller of queer dramaturgy. He writes important plays about gay life and AIDS.
And his latest is just as important! A reminder of an era that has passed but is still affecting people in many meaningful ways.
The story is about a mother's loss and how she comes to terms - or doesn't - with her son's passing of AIDS.
Like life, Mothers and Sons is at times very funny and at times extremely emotional and sad. And true to life, things don't always end in a happy ending or wrapped up in a neat little bow.
But this play is beautifully written and even more beautifully acted by the great dame that is Tyne Daly.
She gives a tour-de-force performance! Showy but not forced.
And equally beautiful in this production is Bobby Steggert, who plays the husband of the widow that Daly's son in the play left behind. Less theatrical than Daly but just as good, Steggert is so real and believable in the part we oftentimes forgot he was acting. He was being. And being so good and sweet and charming and filled with love and light! He shines!
The same cannot be said of his counterpart, the miscast Frederick Weller. Weller looks way younger than his character is supposed to be, and seemingly to compensate he has a distracting vocal affectation - as if he's trying to age his voice. He is acting way hard. Too hard.
And, rounding out the cast is precocious youngster Grayson Taylor, who is so endearing. Kids always work on Broadway! And so does this play!
Go out and see it! It's nice to see shows besides musicals!