Are you a fan of the farce? Mistaken identities, slamming doors, double entendre, sexual shenanigans. Really, what's not to like from this genre, in this case a 130-year-old tightly-written French piece, written by Georges Feydeau and translated by Norman Shapiro.
The witty creation ages well, with plenty of laughs that make the two-and-a-half hour, two-act show from Walterdale Theatre zip by. Whether you're already a fan or new to the genre, this 10-person romp might just whet your appetite for more.
A Fitting Confusion is filled with the requisite silliness of a farce; In this go-round, it's 1930s Paris, and the action revolves around society doctor Balthazar Moulineaux (played with delightful frenzy by Christoff Lundgren). While the doctor tries to hide an affair from his new wife, he's unwittingly hampered by a meddling butler, angry mother-in-law, doe-eyed paramour and bumbling friend, among others. The misunderstandings keep coming, and lovely costumes and an efficient set are a fine backdrop for the fast-paced fun.
Side note: I've never seen a more enjoyable set change than the one presented here, with the whole cast transitioning bits and bobs from the Moulineaux living room to a dressmaker's shabby apartment. Bravo to all.
Farces can be hard to follow, what with characters coming and going through continually slamming doors. But, despite a large cast that has potential to muddle the mind, Feydeau's script and the able players keep us all in the picture. Lundgren's Moulineaux is wiry and quick--one could get whiplash watching him manage people and scenarios in aid of his duplicity. And Dustin Berube as dim-bulb friend Bassinet is slower and witless--an effective foil to the manic Moulineaux. The supporting cast members takes on their duties with skill and enthusiasm too.
The show's director Zack Siezmagraff says 'it's time to laugh again', and he's right. This piece in the Walterdale season feels right for the time and the mood of theatre-goers coming back after a couple of quiet years.
A Fitting Confusion runs through Dec. 17. See walterdaletheatre.com for tickets.