HOW PEOPLE play games and manipulate each other is the theme of Repertory’s Power Plays.

Consisting of three one-act plays, Power Plays examines the way people unconsciously strive to gain power over others in simple day-to-day activities.

In the first play, “The Way Of All Fish,” a wealthy executive, Miss Asquith (Joy Virata), and her secretary, Miss Riverton (Liesl Batucan), unexpectedly share a take-out meal after the former’s evening plans get cancelled. What starts out as an innocent dinner turns into a battle of strength and will when Miss Riverton’s mental stability becomes questionable. The flustered Miss Asquith is now in a position where she has to humor the insane ideas of her normally docile secretary or else.

Titled “Virtual Reality,” the second story is about the unusual encounter of Lefty (Joel Trinidad), a delivery man, with a weird hyper-organized warehouse foreman, DeRecha (Miguel Faustmann). While waiting for a shipment to arrive, DeRecha proposes a rehearsal of the transaction. Lefty is initially set against the idea but eventually goes along with it after a heated argument. The situation turns absurdly out of hand when their little “rehearsal” becomes a dramatic struggle for survival.

All of the actors appear in “In And Out Of The Light,” the last in the trilogy, which is set in a dental office. In an effort to get close to his ex-stripper assistant Sue, Jewish dentist Dr.Kesselman manipulates her into having dinner with him. But the arrival of his extremely paranoid patient, Wanda, and son Harry, thwarts his attempts of having an interlude with Sue.

As expected, the Rep veterans portrayed their roles with boundless energy and talent. Liesl Batucan’s very sensual portrayal of Sue was particularly hilarious.

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Anti-family

Power Plays ran at the Insular Life Theater in Alabang until April 13.

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