Touchstone Theatre

Demon Voice by Shawn MacDonald

Dates and Venue19-28 November @ 8.00pm & 2pm Matinee 21 Nov | Performance Works, Granville Island, Vancouver

Director Katrina Dunn

Reviewer Susan Peake

Playwright Shawn Macdonald has done it again.  After his huge success with Prodigal Son back in 2006, he has successfully followed up with another winner.  Demon Voice is a clever presentation that unfolds the lives of six distinctly different people who all have one thing in common.  They are not being ‘real’.  They convince themselves that they are coping with life, but as we get to know the characters, we eventually see the demons that are plaguing them. 

Stephanie Belding is outstanding as Rachel, the free-spirited, make no apologies, one-night stand who hooks up with Mike (Kevin James) the married man who has convinced himself that his sexless marriage is completely acceptable.  Both Rachel and Mike do not plan on becoming involved, but find they are drawn together by the need to be intimate not only physically, but more importantly, emotionally.

Gwynyth Walsh, as Anna, is exceptional as the aggressive, pragmatic, harsh and downright mean judge who sees the world as black and white – no exceptions.  As her story unfolds we find she is no different from the rest, with demons of her own.  Her unlikely quazi-friendship with Pete, (William Macdonald) an ex-con she is responsible for putting behind bars for an unreasonably long period of time, provided endless opportunities for witty banter between them.

Patrick Keating as Daryll, a down and out street person, is superb and Katharine Venour, who plays a melted woman clinging to life, is equally so.

The set works well with multi-levels that provide opportunities for characters to appear and disappear as required.  Director, Katrina Dunn has done well to bring Macdonald’s work to life on the stage.

Demon Voice is one of those rare dramas that is not forgotten easily, maybe because we can all find a bit of ourselves in at least one of the characters.  Excellent entertainment!

© 2009 Susan Peake