ecumeThéâtre la Seizième
Écume by Anne-Marie White

Dates and Venue 17 - 20 April 2013, 8pm | Studio 16, Vancouver.

Reviewer Ed Farolan

It's refreshing to come and see a French-Canadian play. My French is a bit rusty, but this is one of two nights where surtitles were flashed above the stage. Sometimes, the hero of this play would do his asides in English with that very Quebecois French accent that made them sound funny.

This was an enjoyable play about Emile (Pierre Antoine Lafon Simard) who falls in love with Morgane (Joelle Bourdon), a mysterious "fish woman". She becomes pregnant and she goes with Emile to her native village to share the good news to her deceased mother Simone (Geneviewve Couture) through Momo (Marc-Andre Charette), an undertaker who is able to speak with the dead. Emile who is a scientist doesn't believe in the supernatural but finally sees that indeed there is something more than empirical truth in life.

White who also directs the show gives us an insight to the mysteries of the afterlife. Unless one experiences this mysterious dimension, then it'seasy to be a skeptic. I tend to believe in the afterlife, as do most people, because of our training in Catholic schools. But coming face to face with the dearly departed is still a big mystery to me, as are many mysteries in catholicism.

White's direction is entertaining. She's a Theatre graduate of the University of Ottawa and also the Ecole nationale de theatre du Canada and we can see her expertise through this play's mise en scene. The actors delivered their lines quite well and their movements were precise. The only peeve I had were the foolights which were a bother and hardly used. Someone had to warn members of the audience as they were coming in to watch out, but most of the time, as they walked in, they'd kick the lights and the stage crew member had to constantly readjust them.

Théâtre la Seizième is the only professional French-speaking company here in BC and it wraps up its 38th season with this critically acclaimed play by Ottawa’s Théâtre du Trillium.

© 2013 Ed Farolan