Central Alberta Theatre shines with latest production 37 Postcards

Central Alberta Theatre is exploring the quirky ins and outs of a dysfunctional family via their latest dinner theatre outing, 37 Postcards, which runs through to Dec. 4th at the Quality North Hill Inn.

Directed by Glorene Ellis and written by Michael McKeever, the play explores the inner workings – and outer mayhem – of the Sutton family. Avery Sutton (Perry Mill) has been travelling around Europe for several years and decides to head home with his fiance, Gillian – played wonderfully by the always charming Tara Rorke.

But things just aren’t the same. First of all, his mom Evelyn (Debra O’Brien) seems to be increasingly disconnected from reality. His aunt Ester (Debby Allan) – also a rather eccentric soul – has discovered a shocking means of raking in some cash on the side, and his father Stanford sort of drifts in and out of the goings-on. Stanford, played by the always solid and reliable Michael Sutherland, also has his own personal news to share towards the middle of the play, which adds a touch of melancholy to what otherwise is a quirky and likable comedy.

And then there is Nana – the sharp-tongued (that’s putting it mildly) granny with a penchant for profanity who was mistakenly assumed to have passed on but is very, very much alive. Kudos to the terrific Lavila Lang for her performance – anyone who knows just how sweet and wonderful this lady really is will be very much impressed by her acting chops and in many instances, Lang nabs the biggest laughs of the show.

Ellis has done a masterful job of directing 37 Postcards – it flows along briskly and it’s been a while since I’ve seen a CAT cast gel so well. O’Brien is fantastic as Evelyn – but then again, O’Brien is pretty much terrific in any role she has tackled over the years. She’s funny but she can also nail those subtle tones of vulnerability and pain. Altogether, she turns in a masterful performance as the very fragile Evelyn – you find yourself really feeling for this woman in spite of her apparent refusal to face life as it is.

Allan is also great fun as Aunt Ester. Like O’Brien, Allan always brings so much to every role she’s in. She has such a natural, easy charisma – always fun to watch and always ready with her superb comic timing as well.

And as mentioned earlier, Rorke is great as rattled Gillian, introduced to this most unusual of families. Her and Mill have a strong chemistry as well, which that much more enhances the strength of her performance.

Last but certainly not least, Mill is also really solid as Avery – who on many levels is really at the heart of this story. Mill brings a steady ‘everyman’ feel to his character – he’s earnest, he’s sincere and he really cares about his family – regardless of ways they’ve taken to coping with the darker chapters of life.

All said, 37 Postcards has a nice polished sense of sophistication to it. It’s a really different kind of story, but I mean that in a good way. And again, the power of the cast – who work so well together and bring everything they have to the table in terms of energy, spirit and dedication – lifts it to an even higher place.

For tickets or more information about performance times, call the Black Knight Inn Ticket Centre at 403-755-6626 or visit www.blackknightinn.ca.


Just Posted

Bruce Buruma enters the UCP nomination race for Red Deer South

Vote for candidate takes place early in the New Year

Rollovers near Ponoka keep crews busy

Wintry road conditions proved a struggle for motorists on the QE2 highway with several incidents

Central Alberta Theatre heads into ‘holiday’ mode with latest offering

Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some) open Nov. 17th at the Black Knight Inn

Canada Winter Games upgrades completed at Canyon Ski Resort

Officials say improving the resort makes it a destination for future winter sports competitions

Red Deerian helps Kenyan woman get slushy machine – the first in Northern Kenya

The woman named her store after Red Deer because of all the support

Winter weather hits parts of Canada

As some parts of the country brace for cold, parts of B.C. remain warmer than 10 C

Canada’s health system commendable overall but barriers to care remain: UN

The United Nations says Canada’s health care system is “commendable” overall but vulnerable groups still face barriers to quality care.

Fashion Fridays: 5 coats you need this winter!

Kim XO, lets you know the best online shopping tips during Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Saskatchewan college honours memory of Humboldt Broncos coach

Darcy Haugan wore jersey No. 22 when he was a star player with the Briercrest College Clippers

Liberals to act quickly if Saturday midnight deal deadline breached: source

Oh Friday, Canadian Union of Postal Workers said it would not bring the latest offers to a vote of its members

Police probe several allegations of sex assault at Toronto school

Police say they have learned of other incidents of alleged assault and sexual assault

Missing-persons list tops 600 in fire-stricken California

Disaster escalates as officials raised the death toll to 63

VIDEO: The definition of a kilogram has officially changed

50-plus countries voted to a ground-breaking overhaul to the international system of measurements

Semi tractor hauling lumber rolls near Ponoka

Icy roads continue to wreak havoc on the the QE2

Most Read