Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Tremors: I'm So Close... & Cozy Catastrophe

Last night I was invited to attend the Tremors festival put on by Rumble Productions. Tremors is Rumble’s biennial showcase for emerging artists and Craig Hall in his Artistic Producer’s Statement says “We believe that the best way to develop the next generation of theatre patrons is to help the next generation of theatre artists to create their best work”. As, many of you know from reading my blog, this is something that I’ve been raving about for years and I think it is awesome that this is part of Rumble’s mandate.

The first show is I’m So Close… created by Why Not Theatre from Toronto and if you are interested in new ways of storytelling then this is the show for you. It’s a witty and clever look at the way technology has sped up the already fast pace of the 9-5 rat race. Particularly clever are some of the scenes where repetitive movement drives this idea home. Steve (played by Troels Hagen Findsen) goes through his morning routine at lighting speed, brushing his teeth, getting his coffee, talking on his cellphone, all in a matter of minutes. The same goes for his first day of work where the two other performers, Ravi Jain and Katrina Bugaj, take turns introducing him to various colleagues at his new job. This fast-paced, jet setting lifestyle takes him away from his wife (also played by Katrina Bugaj) and she becomes disconnected from him. A very funny scene has her entering into a dream sequence with Troels Hagen Findsen playing Max, her pet fish.

The second show is Cozy Catastrophe created by local group Theatre Melee. If you liked Evil Dead The Musical, or actually any B-Grade cult horror movie for that matter, than this is the show for you. After the world outside has been decimated by something mysterious four strangers seek refuge in what they refer to as a “wine cellar”. Four crazy and distinct characters played by, Andrew McNee (who could pass for a Seth Rogen double in this show), Erin Mathews, Michael Rinaldi and Juno Ruddell, hysterically try to figure out what to do now that their world has been destroyed and evil lurks outside the door. The setting, the basement in the old green house (former home of Green Thumb Theatre) next door, allows the creators of the show to put together an experience for the audience that allows them to enter the world of these characters. The lighting is just some rusty old fixtures hanging from the ceiling and for a good five minutes at the beginning it is completely dark except for a few matches. And, the sound (also created by Michael Rinaldi) comes reverberating from somewhere so that the audience actually feels the ground beneath them grumble.

Cozy Catastrophe continues until April 17th playing nightly at 9pm. Meet inside The Cultch they will escort you next door when the show is ready to begin. I’m So Close… is only here for a few more nights until Saturday, April 10th. It plays nightly at 7pm. Starting tomorrow Dusty Flowerpot Collective will be performing every 20 minutes in the basement of the Cultch between 8pm-10pm. can go check out I’m So Close… at 7pm. It ends at approx 8pm. Then see the Dusty Flowerpot Collective (by donation) while you wait to get into Cozy Catastrophe at 9pm. Sounds like a good night of theatre to me. And, all for the price of approx $20. Single show tickets for Tremors are $10 or you can purchase the 3-show pass for $27. Tickets available at the Cultch Box Office, either online or by phone at 604.251.1363

(Photos: Top - Troels Hagen Findsen & Katrina Bugaj. Bottom - L - R - Andrew McNee, Juno Ruddell, Erin Mathews, Michael Rinaldi. Courtesy of Ellie O'Day)

~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

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