Monica Dolan is the kind of performer that demands attention from the audience and instantly gets it. It is rare to see a performer command the stage so completely, particularly when faced with the responsibility of being the only performer there. Performing solo can easily compromise the most experienced actor, it is vulnerable and intimate. But Dolan’s storytelling skills are incredibly honed and the piece has the audience mesmerized from beginning to end. The text is well written, with psychological realism mixed in with the thought piece presented. Is it ever right to sexualize children’s behavior? Where does it stem from? And who is to blame? The exposition is cleverly done, neither blatant nor lacking, the audience is presented with all the information needed to understand the piece. And this Dolan manages to do without underestimating the audience.
The gradual emotional development of the character is nothing short of genius. The composed professional woman introduced at the beginning slowly unravels in front of the audience as the case presented becomes ever more complex and morally ambiguous. I am always equally amazed at actors ability to work with their environment, to manage to maintain the audience's attention through the noise of busy city life, and Monica Dolan does just that. Through blaring sirens, cell phone lights and loud chewing of rock candy she always brought me back to the story. The B*easts is a show with a message, a cleverly written thought piece that is expertly executed. Bravo Monica Dolan. - Disa Andersen