Capital Critics' Circle
Le cercle des critiques de la capitale

Reviewing Theatre in Canada's Capital Region
La critique théâtrale de la région Ottawa-Gatineau

Spamalot : Orpheus Musical Theatre takes on Monty Python.

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region   , ,

2014 03 06 M Orpheus Spamalot DRESS Rehearsal (408)QFS

Photo credits: Valleywind Productions/David Pasho.

Hard to tell who was having more fun on opening night of Orpheus’ hilarious production of Monty Python’s Spamalot: the audience or the cast.For sure, each fed off the other as the unabashedly silly musical about King Arthur and the search for the Holy Grail unrolled, in the process skewering everything from the Arthurian legend itself to political correctness and the tradition of the Broadway musical.

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Balanced Direction by Chantale Plante, makes Lost in Yonkers Both Comic and Genuinely Moving.

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region.   , ,

Elements of Neil Simon’s life often appear in his plays. While his 1991 drama Lost in Yonkers is not as closely autobiographical as the earlier written Brighton Beach Memoirs, Biloxi Blues and Broadway Bound trilogy, his family is clearly a good part of the source material for this memory play.

Yonkers, which won the Pulitzer, several Tony awards and a Drama Desk award, ran for 780 performances on Broadway and became a successful movie in 1993, has been revived on a number of stages across North America recently. Once declared Simon’s best play, current responses have not been universally positive.

Perhaps this is in part because it is set in the early 1940s and fewer members of today’s audiences have as clear an understanding of the era and the hardships it presented for so many. The play itself, in combining serious issues of family dysfunctionality, mental health and poverty with comedy and Simon’s signature one-liners, is harder to categorize.

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