Sunday, March 14, 2010

Stewart Lemoine's Evelyn Strange

Mary and I were in Calgary last night and had the opportunity to attend the 'preview' opening of Stewart Lemoine's latest play, Evelyn Strange at the Vertigo Theatre and WOW! were we impressed. The best play we've seen in a couple of years. Absolutely hilarious and intriguing. Great writing and excellent performances and direction, nice stage design -- really, a flawlessly mounted production. I guessed who done it half way through (though that wasn't really the core mystery) but the dialog was absolutely brilliant, and the handling of the reveal the best of any play of this sort. Highly recommend this production to anyone in Calgary; the rest of you should demand this play be brought to your local theater.

Earlier in the day we took the kids to YStage presentation of Axis Theatre Company's King Arthur's Kitchen, the best kids' production we've seen in five years. Excellent clowning to get across the basic Arthur storyline, with lots of frantic running around and silliness.

So that's two for two from Vertigo, so definitely going to start making a point of going -- especially when they mount both the kid and adult play the same weekend so we can kill two birds with one commute.

It's funny, because Mary and I had been discussing at length what characteristics a good children's play has to have, and this one had 2 out of the 3 elements perfectly done - in contrast to a string of disappointing offerings from Storybook Theatre.

Next month is ScriptFrenzy and if I weren't already committed to finishing my novel (and editing three books for Five Rivers) in that timeframe, I'd give a children's play a go. (My play is entitled "The Princess and the Zombies" and has Kasia as the target audience and Tigana as the lead actor, so I'm pretty sure I know what I'm doing! But that will have to wait until next year.

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