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Review: A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur is Fascinating

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Erin Ormond, Kaitlin Williams, Stacie Steadman, Randi Edmundson. Photo: Cim MacDonald

 

Romanticism versus practicality, generosity versus spitefulness, working class versus professional, Williams comes back time and time again to themes that are universal, and digs deep into the intimate nature of these women’s lives to examine them.

It doesn’t matter that it’s 2016, when Bodey opines “there’s always a gossipy little group” she could be talking about life today.  And Helena, describing “dinner for one”, echoes the complaints of generations of lonely people while Dottie’s relentless pursuit of physical fitness and the man she dreams of definitely rejoin concerns of modern women. Heartbreak and disappointment are inevitable.

Set designer Amanda Larder, through judicious use of suspended doorways and windows, and complete working kitchen, creates the claustrophobic impression of the tight confines in Bodey and Dottie’s cramped efficiency, paying particular and faithful attention to the playwright’s descriptions.  When Helena laughs at the décor, what had originally appeared charming takes on a completely different look as seen through her eyes—a sad example of the German tenements so far removed from her experience.

Lighting (Marsha Sibthorpe) illuminates crucial moments of despair—Dottie sobs disconsolately under the soft haloed light in the bedroom, and Helena steps out of the action for a moment to show her true feelings.

Crystal Hanson’s costumes clearly define the class distinctions—Bodey is dowdy in her house dress, Helena–crisp and elegant as if stepping off the society pages, Dottie—girlish in a gown that cost dearly and Sophie frumpy in be-ruffled peignoir.

dottie-creve-coeurStacie Steadman as Dottie. Photo: Cim MacDonald

While elements of nostalgia are at play in terms of décor and household convenience, present day audiences will be grateful for societal changes sometimes taken for granted—Bodey rejoices in an extra half-Saturday off, Dottie has happily “crossed the line”, Helena arrives for a visit that is not expected.

Boundaries and limits are clearly defined–a Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur is fascinating in its exploration of how these four women test and conform to them, and in the interplay in their relationships.

Director Sarah Rodgers and actors have crafted a sensitive, nuanced production that inspires viewers to want to know more, and proves, once again, the profound ability of Tennessee Williams to transcend time and place.

A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur has a limited run. Don’t be disappointed.

A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur at the Chemainus Theatre Festival
September 9-24, 2016
Tickets: from $28

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Upcoming Gallery Exhibit: Brian Scott, September 9 to 24

Brian Scott – September 9 to 24

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About Brian Scott

Canadian artist Brian Scott is an original oil painter whose name is inextricably linked to colour – wild and wonderful mixes of fanciful, fun and exciting hues that bring the west coast fishing boats, architecture and tumble-down buildings of our beloved coastal British Columbia into a new perspective. Whether you make your home here on Vancouver Island or are a visitor to Canada the fine art originals of Brian Scott will evoke wonderful memories!

Expressionist oil paintings produced on location are this BC artist’s main passion. His emphasis on design and composition, combined with a full spectrum of colour, has become the trademark of his paintings. Brian Scott focuses international attention on Canadian art; his original oil paintings have sold internationally in the U.K., Hong Kong, Germany, Holland, Norway, Switzerland, Australia and the U.S.and in his well-established market here on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada.

You can view and purchase Brian Scott’s original art, fine art prints, greeting cards, Brian’s books – collections of painting and accompanying stories – and whimsical papier mache sculptures based on his painting. Visit his art gallery studio in Black Creek in the Comox Valley on Vancouver Island, BC, Canada, open most days. Watch for the colourful signs on scenic Hwy. 19A.

Brian’s Website

Click Here to Visit