Venue: Granville Island Stage
Dates: 28 November 2002 - 4 January 2003
Reviewer: Jane Penistan
Carol's Christmas is a modern take on Dickens' well-known Christmas
Carol. Kathleen Oliver's witty, perceptive script delights while it
underscores some of the less attractive traits in a successful twenty-first-century
commercial radio programme broadcaster. There is plenty of humour and
humanity here, and little sentimentality.
Yvan Morissette's versatile contemporary set has all the polish of successful
business premises. The light wood and uncluttered lines of the sparse
but practical furniture, together with the spaciousness of the stage all
suggest superficial wealth with little comfort. This is the hardheaded
business world with no room for personalities or idiosyncrasies. The lighting
is bright and harsh where this is called for and subtle and subdued during
the warmer flashback scenes of past family life.
Kerry Sandomirsky carries Carol through the play from hard shelled radio
interviewer and workaholic business woman, back to childhood memories
of the enjoyment of being a loved child in an affectionate family, to
the ambitious career woman with no time for romance or compassion, to
the loneliness of a friendless "success" and an awakening to the world
outside commerce. The five other members of the cast play multiple roles.
Allan Morgan is the voice of reason and humanity in his scenes as a
father with his family, and as he returns to haunt Carol in her self-imposed
ostracism. Dion Johnstone is the faithful lover, besides being an announcer
and business associate. Patti Allan, Brendan Beiser and Tiffany Lyndall-Knight
competently and convincingly play family members, business associates,
friends and neighbours, changing as instantly and effortlessly and as
seamlessly as the flow of the play demands.
There is lots of entertainment here in this good evening of Christmas
past, present and future with its subtle parallels to Dickens' Victorian
tale. Add to this, it's home-grown in Vancouver, from the play's first
reading to this scintillating first night. Congratulations to the Arts
Club, playwright, cast and crew of Carol's Christmas.
Carol's Christmas runs at The Arts Club Granville Island Stage,
1585 Johnstone Street, Granville Island, 28 November 2002 - 4 January
2003, Monday through Saturday at 20.00. with matinees Wednesdays and Saturdays
at 2.00 p.m. Tickets Monday to Saturday Adult $29 -$38, Seniors $26 -
$38 and Students $19 - $38. Matinees Adult $29, Seniors $26 Students $19.
There are numerous special performances. For information and to reserve
tickets call the Box Office at 604.687.1644.