xAenigma Theatre And Bright Young Theatre

VIVA by Scott Button

Dates and Venue October 14 – 21, 2017, 8pm. October 15, 21, 22 at 2pm. NO SHOW on October 16 | The Havana, 1212 Commercial Dr, Vancouver

Reviewer Ed Farolan

The play can be confusing at the start when both characters are in a plane about to land in LasVegas. But then, as the play progresses, we start to understand that like many new plays where actors play multiple roles including narrating events, we get to understand the story. Two Strangers, Two Stories, Las Vegas.

The title is obviously taken from the Elvis song "Viva Las Vegas" as these two strangers who first meet in the plane encounter each other over the course of one night. Vancouver Playwright Scott Button makes the world premiere with this play which I found quite interesting. This 80-minute drama was well-acted by Bright Young Theatre’s Co-Artistic Director Melanie Reich (Alice) and Aenigma Alum Patrick Dodd (Graeme).

The production team includes: Co-Artistic Director of Aenigma Theatre, Sarah Melo, creating the Set, Alix Miller designing the Costumes, Chengyan Boon doing the Lights, and two-time Jessie Nominee Scott Zechner designing Sound. It is being Stage Managed by Javier Sotres and is directed by Tanya Mathivanan whose direction was superb.

In the director's notes, Mathivanan commented that the story is "a hyper-realistic, ontological examination of love, loss, and the human capacity for extraordinary actions". To honor the victims of the mass shooting last October 1st in Las Vegas, 100% of the box office revenue for the preview performances last October 12 and 13 will be donated to the Red Cross and to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence in the US.

© 2017 Ed Farolan