sGateway Theatre in association with Lunkamud and Tarragon Theatre
Miss Caledonia by Melody A. Johnson

Dates and Venue March 5 - 14, 2015 | Studio B, Gateway Theatre, Richmond

Reviewer Ed Farolan

This is the kind of show that would appeal more to young girls from hick towns who dream of becoming a "Miss" in either small-town beauty contests or even bigger ones. It's the underdog trying hard and being triumphant, even in a small way, is basically the theme of this show.

This one-woman show is based on a true story, on Johnson's mom who had dreams of escaping the drudgery of being a farm girl and imagining to hit the big screen the way small-town girl Debbie Reynolds did. Although I found the show quite entertaining, I felt it should have been edited more.

I think a one-person show should not be longer than an hour. In this case, it was a 90-minute show with a 15-minute intermission. That's a bit too long for one person no matter how entertaining that person is. The editing should probably start towards the end of the first act when she narrates her first experience as a beauty contestant. The first 30 minutes of the show was not necessary, as she talks about her work in the farm and plays the roles of her mother and father as they go through the drudgery of farm work.

I felt that she should have just focused on the beauty contests and her "finishing" school rather than digress into other topics that had nothing to do with what the story is all about: her journey towards being Miss Caledonia.

© 2015 Ed Farolan