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Monday, February 10, 2020

February Theatre - And the Theme is Fight the Power!

I've taken in 3 theatrical events so far this month (2 productions, and one reading of a new work) and I am noticing a theme... it's all about fighting against oppression!

The first show I took in was 1984 at Walterdale Theatre (full disclosure: I am Board President of Walterdale). It opened last Wednesday and runs to Saturday, February 15th. The production is a striking adaptation of George Orwell's 1949 novel. I was very impressed with the striking and flawless design of the show and clear direction. It's executed cleanly by it's cast, who do an excellent job creating the dystopia of the world. As Winston Smith, Michael Anderson shifts from disillusioned party member, to brash rebel, and then to a descent into brokenness as he is defeated and tortured by the all-seeing all-knowing Big Brother-led Inner Party. I've never seen 1984 onstage before, and I recommend this production as a worthy adaptation for the stage. 1984 runs to Feb 15th and you can get tickets here.

Photo Credit: Scott Henderson, Henderson Images

I also saw The Invisible: Agents of Ungentlemanly Warfare at Catalyst Theatre. It's about 7 women agents of subterfuge who work as a team to help defeat the Nazis in WW II. I've written a longer write-up here. I can summarize to say I loved it! Tickets are available until February 23 and you can click here to purchase them.

Photo Credit: dbphotographics

The reading I attended was at Script Salon - Anahita's Republic by AuTash. It's a piece I know well as I participated in some of the early readings and work shopping of it. It's a brilliant play written by a two Edmonton playwrights about modern day Iran and the challenges of living in a repressive society where not everyone is equal. There's much more to it than that as it also offers comment on western society, but does so in a very human way. I really hope that this piece gets picked up for production soon. I think it tells a story that everyone would benefit from hearing. It was such a delight to hear it read by such talented actors and to hear how far it has grown in the four years of it's development.

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