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Sonoma County Gazette
Arlene and Sheldon
Arlene (Charlotte Jacobs) and Sheldon (Michael Sally) lament the doomed search for Kosher food on their vacation.

at Ross Valley Players

Apr 25, 2018
by Alexa Chipman


Managing dichotomous personalities in a relationship can rend an otherwise loving couple into quarreling combatants. She might wish to attend a party, chatting eagerly with friends, and he might prefer relaxing at home with a book relishing peaceful silence. For the married psychologists in ‘Just My TYPE’ that sort of challenge is familiar—they have been counseling couples for years. When Ben and Kate decide to co-author a book, their writing retreat of friendly banter descends into open hostility with the looming deadline, testing their theories of mutual understanding.

Ben and Kate believe that the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is helpful when searching for solutions to common arguments in a marriage. People who make decisions that are reasoned and critical will clash with those who are led by instinct and empathy, since they use different indicators for choosing the best course of action. The spouse who plans weeks in advance can run into trouble when married to a spontaneous personality who prefers to “go with the flow” and see what happens. Meticulous research shows in the book by Charlotte Jacobs and Michael Sally, occasionally coming across as if it was a college lecture, rather than a musical, with projections of diagrams in the background.

Introvert George (Michael Sally) meets bubbly extrovert Alana (Charlotte Jacobs).

Songs by local composer Rita Abrams have lightly tripping lyrics packed into cheerful melodies, reminiscent of Gilbert and Sullivan, including a lovely “Walk Away” wondering when love is not enough to bridge the gap between extroverts and introverts. Christopher Beller is creative and lively on the drums, a young musician to watch for.

Ben (Michael Sally) and Kate (Charlotte Jacobs) begin to argue about how their book should be organized.

Sally is amusing as Ben and a wide range of characters, whether galavanting in bright swim fins or kvetching about the lack of proper delis in San Francisco, which is ironic considering there are quite a few. Jacobs is less conspicuous as Kate and her examples of personality types, until she belts into “Way More Woman” as Wilma Dean.

‘Just My TYPE’ is a pleasant musical that is too lengthy for its style and subject matter, with a confusing ending caused by the lighting design. If you are interested in learning about Myers-Briggs, it is a helpful introduction with an engaging cast, and a chance to observe the co-authors inhabit their roles.

Just My TYPE

Presented by Ross Alternative Works through April 29, 2018
Fri/Sat at 8:00pm, Sun at 2:00pm

Ross Valley Players
The Barn Theater, Marin Art & Garden Center
30 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, Ross, 94957

(415) 456-9555 x1

Photos by Nicole Amyx

Author Website -

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Alexa Chiman - Live Theater REVIEWS


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