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The Boston Globe

Theater & art

Stage Review

‘Memory House’ a satisfying sliver of a play

Pie and memories are right recipe for this pair

LOWELL — What is it about baking a pie that strikes such a visceral chord? Beyond the inviting aroma, the feeling of home, and the rewarding taste, there’s an exactness to the art that playwright Kathleen Tolan transforms into a powerful metaphor in “Memory House,” now getting a crisp production at Merrimack Repertory Theatre.

Set on New Year’s Eve in the New York apartment of Maggie (an affecting Susan Pellegrino) and her teenage daughter Katia (the remarkably expressive Rebecca Blumhagen), this satisfying sliver of a play, just 80 minutes long, captures the few hours left before Katia’s college application essay is due. While Katia struggles to complete it, the recently divorced Maggie decides to make a blueberry pie, a domestic pursuit that’s new to her.

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