If you try hard enough, you can do this. I managed to see two shows today by hitting the matinee of The Missionary Position at the University of Alberta Timm's Centre and then going to the evening performance of Private Lives at The Citadel. They are two very different pieces of theatre so separating thought about them was not that difficult.
It was a major shift to the evening's performance of Private Lives. This is not a deep piece - but a hilarious romp in the world of Noel Coward. I have never seen the play before, despite it's popularity, and had a good time laughing at the dry wit of Coward as delivered by divorced couple Elyot (John Ullyatt) and Amanda (Diana Donnelly). Ullyatt and Donnelly have a true chemistry and their verbal and physical sparring is note-perfect. The script is a little dated, but in keeping the period so sharp right down to the Picasso on the wall, the production overcomes the inherent dangers. There was a gasp of shock at the first slap, but the fight quickly turns so comical that that 2013 sensibility of what it means when there is physical violence between a man and a women can be diffused. I was blown away (as was my mother) with the outstanding effects in the Second Act. It leaves you in a bit of a gasping shock and I give kudos to the production team and stage management for creating true magic. Although a traditional piece, it's a great show that I think anyone would be hard pressed not to laugh at, and it looks and sounds absolutely gorgeous so special mention to Leslie Frankish for her Set and Costume design and Joel Crichton for the Sound design.