A THOUSAND WORDS - Alex Waterhouse-Hayward's blog on pictures, plants, politics and whatever else is on his mind.




 

Pricked & Prodded At The Waiting Room
Wednesday, October 07, 2015



“I don’t know what’s worse: to not know what you are and be happy, or to become what you’ve always wanted to be, and feel alone.”
Daniel Keyes - Flowers for Algernon

“I may not have all the time I thought I had...”
 Daniel Keyes - Flowers for Algernon 

Jonathon Young, John Mann, Matreya Scarrwener &  Michael Wener - October 7 2015

Tonight I went with my Rosemary to the opening of the Arts Club Theatre Co­­mpany production (at the Granville Island Stage) of Morris Panych’s (Book and Direction) The Waiting Room. The music and lyrics (and voice) were by John Mann.


Jonathon Young

Anybody who has peaked into my blogs from time to time must know that as the Latin American that I am I have never understood when actors who are talking suddenly begin to sing (worse even when they danc, too). In short I used to hate musicals but thanks to Bill Millerd (Artistic Director of the Arts Club Theatre Company) I have come to tolerate them and (gosh!) even like some of them.

By the standard of whatever a musical is supposed to be defined as, this collaboration between John Mann and Morris Panych is not (I repeat, not) a musical. It is as theatre should be (for this backward Latin American). The actors don’t sing, they act. The musicians back stage (seen behind a semi transparent scrim, Brad Gillard, banjo, Eric Reed guitar, Allan Rodger, keyboards and Sheri Ulrich on violin) play the music while John Mann sings and stomps so dramatically on his feet. This is a “musical” for me.


Morris Panych - Tired of waiting

I don’t want to use the expression “as always” so I will point out that Jonathon Young is superb and the accompanying cast of Jillian Fargey as L, Bonnie Panych as Nurse (pleasant), Mrs. C and as the doctor from hell Doctor F, Chris Cochrane as the X-Ray Technician (and strange to say a born again at a hospital!) and Peter Anderson as Doctor D, and as Neil is as happy as Don Quixote’s sidekick, are all up to par.

I have some inside knowledge that John Mann had a wonderful muse called Jill when he wrote song and lyrics for this play..

Jill - John Mann's Muse

But I must leave the rest of this story to the real revelation and that is Matreya Scarrwener who as C is, and like a quark, sometimes isn’t. That's charm.

For some time at Arts Club Theatre openings I have seen this lovely girl with an uncommonly perfect complexion smiling and gesticulating with a youngish man. I have wondered who she was. Now I know. After the show I went up to the man and inquired. He is Mattreya’s dad. His name is Michael. Before tonight he has seen the play twice and he told me that the first time he cried for the duration. This is understandable as his daughter’s performance is riveting, natural, funny and sad, all at the same time.

To Mr. Panych I must thank for coming up with a “musical” that has content. It has content that is not American. It has content that disturbs (a tad) and which just might make us all look up exactly what it was that Epicurus wrote about death.

As for John Mann, I must thank him for having a small band that played terrific music that did not sound like Broadway. Sometimes (more often than) not we have to thank ourselves for being Canadian.

Ken MacDonald, the Set and Costume Designer I nominate to be the Chair of the Board. I am jealous of Dramaturg Rachel Ditor. Imagine being paid to have fun! 

I hope I am around (maybe not!)  to see a performance by Mattreya Scarrwener (who is 17) wearing full adult makeup.

Morris Panych's pleasure in Waiting for G




     

Previous Posts
Juliana Soltis In My Mirror Nevermore

Facebook Event Invitations - Anathema to the Sense...

Disgraced - A Comedy - An Operatic Tragedy About R...

El Sexo Débil

The New VAG - Stacked Hat Boxes In A World Of Squa...

Al Espejo Retrovisor de un Coche

¡Messi! ¡Messi! - ¡Francisco! ¡Francisco!

Playboy

Kodachrome

Flickering Forward Into the Past



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7/10/16 - 7/17/16

7/17/16 - 7/24/16

7/24/16 - 7/31/16

7/31/16 - 8/7/16

8/7/16 - 8/14/16

8/14/16 - 8/21/16

8/21/16 - 8/28/16

8/28/16 - 9/4/16

9/4/16 - 9/11/16

9/11/16 - 9/18/16

9/18/16 - 9/25/16

9/25/16 - 10/2/16

10/2/16 - 10/9/16

10/9/16 - 10/16/16

10/16/16 - 10/23/16

10/23/16 - 10/30/16

10/30/16 - 11/6/16

11/6/16 - 11/13/16

11/13/16 - 11/20/16

11/20/16 - 11/27/16

11/27/16 - 12/4/16

12/4/16 - 12/11/16