Austin’s piquant and trenchant stage persona is a perfect fit as Diane. She makes a bravura run of The Little Dog Laughed. The production is a gossamer lightning flash that illuminates character and moves action.
Austin provides the core energy of The Little Dog Laughed as the unapologetic and worldly amoral compass for the other, younger characters. The chemistry of the cast is outstanding and this production shines.
“Wit” is a tour de force for Austin. We watch Vivian’s physical disintegration, as the actress carefully limns her slide from the steely patient into the childlike figure. Austin’s nuanced performance is truly incandescent.
Austin, thankfully, underplays her character’s predicament with great resolve and strength. The central scene of Act II in Broadway Bound in which she confides in Eugene in a very private moment, might be the most effective this reviewer has ever seen. They are that good.
In the role of Ouisa in Six Degrees of Separation, Laura Austin is dynamic. In her delivery of the play’s most famous monologue, from which it takes its name, Austin is the embodiment of Guare’s comedy-drama cocktail. By the curtain, Austin manages to humanize Ouisa.
Austin inhabits the role of Diana in Next to Normal. With hair like spiky nerve endings and eyes that move from a deer-in-the-headlights stare to a burning and probing intensity, she is, like many real-life sufferers of mental illness, both appealing and off-putting.