By Kathy Carpenter
December 8, 2020 (La Mesa) - Dateline with a touch of Glee sprinkled in best describes this virtual performance by Lamplighters Theatre in La Mesa. Director O.P. Hadlock's The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey shines a light on two things: first, the brilliant acting of James Steinberg, portraying eight characters in this one man show. It takes a great talent to pull shows like this off and have viewers leave feeling as if a whole group of people were witnessed.
Second, the show celebrates that what makes us different, makes us shine--something everyone needs to focus on these days. Leonard was brightness personified and told repeatedly he should want to tone things down, but he never did. Although only 14 years old, he was unapologetically himself. Some may argue that that’s why he was killed. But if he listened and hid within himself, he would have been dying on the inside.