By Myle Yan Tay
Francis (played by Paul McCracken) asks the audience if they know that the play is based on a commedia dell’arte work from the 18th century. Greeted by silence, he smiles, thankful that there aren’t any “dicks in the audience”. This irreverent and fast-paced spirit keeps the production vibrant and alive.
But when the production loses this energy and drags, it falters.
For commedia dell’arte to work, there needs to be a very sharp sense of timing. In this production, the dynamic shifts between complete doubt, full bravado, asides to the audience, and emotional outbursts vary in quality. Alexander Clark, playing the bigoted and proud Stanley Stubbers, provides us with charm and bluntness. Neal Thapar is engaging as the quintessential thespian, ready to cry at the drop of a hat.
But there is room for more fine-tuning. Certain gags were clearly honed while others lack that same punch.
Read the full review here.
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