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one mans' opinion [ALL REVIEWERS]
Companies Reviewed#
Theatre in the Square1
Dad's Garage Theatre Company1
Aurora Theatre1
Average Rating Given : 2.66667
Reviews in Last 6 months :

The Mystery of Edwin Drood, by Rupert Holmes
Failed Potential
Monday, October 21, 2002
This show is by no means a bad show, but given the material and the collective talent of the group it leaves one wanting much more. The show is a play within a play story and ideally there is to be a big sense of fun and spontaneity between the "actors" and the audience. Here the jokes seem planned and the director has done little to distinguish people from their actor persona and the character they portray in the play within the play. The other major missing ingredient is the sexual tension in the Rosa Bud/Jasper relationship. Especially on the part of Keri Hughes as Rosa Bud, whose look and Operatic singing style do not fit the naïveté of her character. The show is ripe with good individual performances; Tony Brown, Jill Hames and Jeff McKerley were all solid. (Although I have seen them all do better work) And Ryan Houchens is delightful, a fine young talent, we wish there were more of him in the show.

Maybe I'm too familiar with the original cast recording, but Sandra Benton did not have the powerful belt that her songs and her presence demand.

As always at the Aurora the production values and orchestra were first class. Bottom line, it was a fine evening of theatre, but the personality of the show seemed strained. They were trying too hard and you could see the flop sweat.

But hey, it's just... one man's opinion

The Caretaker, by Harold Pinter
Pinter at it's best
Saturday, October 19, 2002
This production of Harold Pinter's, The Caretaker is notable for the excellent crafting of big, bold, and yet believable characters. The small cast is stellar, with Hugh Adams, Brandon O'Dell and David Milford. Director John Stevens work of keeping the dramatic tension building through the "Pinter Pauses" make one almost more excited to see what happens between the action of the play. In the title role Mr. Milford stands out as actor who is able create a character that is almost bigger than life, yet firmly grounded in a cold and desperate reality. Kat Conley's cluttered set is the perfect metaphor for the emotional clutter and decay that stifles all three characters, While Ken Yunker's lights most appropriately keeps faces lit but corners dingy. For me TITS is quite a haul and I don’t attend as often as I'd like. So don't miss this play due to the drive.

Carrie White: The Musical*, by Sean Daniels, George Faughnan (adapted), Joel Abbott (Music)
Bloody Shame
Wednesday, July 3, 2002
I went into this production with expectations that were too high. Who could blame me; the pre-publicity, press coverage and word of mouth have been as strong as any show I can remember. I am not a devotee of the book or film, but could not resist the hype.
This show fails on the basic storytelling level. First of all the director/writer and his company seem confused as to whether they want to tell the story "straight" and let the audience find the humor in the absurdity of interjected song and dance, and drag show elements. Or whether they want to step outside the story and comment on the subject matter. By doing the latter they more often than not they get the small cheap laugh rather than set up the big pay off later on. The set does little to help the story along and it is often confusing as to scene locations until well into the scene. This is where an intimate knowledge of the work being spoofed is helpful.

Joel Abbott's score is fine, but since it was an original work perhaps he could have written songs to the level and range of the singers in the show. Better yet the casting of some real singers instead of friends and regulars would have been an improvement. Even the special effects were not as fun or inventive as in past Dad's wacky musical productions like Cannibal and Action Movie, which is often the highlight of this genre.

I agree with my peers that the performance of George Faughnan is first rate as it rings with honesty and consistency. Most of the rest of the ensemble I have seen do much better work in other shows.

I love to see theaters taking big risks, because with great risk there is the potential for great reward. Sadly, there is also a greater opportunity for failure.

The hype is big and don't think my harsh words will hurt ticket sales so good luck.

Remember mine is only...

"one mans' opinion"

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