Blue Bridge Theatre’s production of All My Sons plays at the Roxy Theatre now through June 10. Courtesy Blue Bridge Theatre

REVIEW: Strong emotions felt in latest Blue Bridge Theatre offering

Local cast, crew do great justice to Arthur Miller’s All My Sons, writes Sheila Martindale

By Sheila Martindale

Monday Magazine contributor

The time is just after the end of the Second World War, the place is an ordinary backyard in an average American city.

Chris Keller is back from the conflict, but his brother has been listed as missing for three and a half years. Their mother refuses to believe that Larry is dead and thus prevents the family from moving on. Add to this tension the fact Chris is ready to marry Larry’s girl. And underlying everything is a big secret that is ripping two families apart. So this is a typical Arthur Miller drama, which cannot possibly end well; and does not disappoint.

The strength of this play and this production of All My Sons is the amount of real emotion on the stage. Jan Wood and Brian Linds, as parents Kate and Joe Keller, are both riveting and believable. We can sympathize with Kate’s obsession at the same time as being irritated by it; and we are charmed by Joe’s friendly manner and devotion to Chris, even as we come to realize the enormity of his actions on the factory floor.

Chris and Ann are skillfully portrayed by J. Lindsay Robinson and Laura-Jane Tresidder as they deal with their love for each other and the antagonism of their families, to say nothing of the widespread effect of their fathers’ actions. Then we have Michael Armstrong and Cyllene Richmond as the doctor and his wife, with their own agendas and shattered dreams. The one child of the piece is Jude Culham-Keays, who plays the part of young Bert with aplomb.

A word must be said about the very functional set of the backyard, with Muskoka chairs, a nice patio and a small table with café chairs, as well as a creaky swing-sofa. Graham McMonagle is responsible for this, which sometimes accommodates nine actors on the small stage at the same time. Jason King’s sound and projection effects add hugely to the drama of the piece, evoking the difficult times of nightly bombing raids in Europe.

Brian Richmond is to be congratulated on his direction, as he allows the actors much leeway in showing their feelings, but stops them just short of being maudlin.

You will not want to miss this brilliant piece of theatre at the Roxy Theatre at Quadra at Hillside. All My Sons runs until June 10. Tickets are available online at bluebridgetheatre.ca or by phone at 250-382-3370.

editor@mondaymag.com

Just Posted

Glass Tiger hits reimagined, brought to the stage

The pride of Newmarket Ont. performs songs from 31 at the McPherson Playhouse

Multiple Juno Award winning Arkells bringing new tunes to Victoria in 2019

Hamilton-based rock band proved hugely popular in city during Canada 150 celebrations

Bill Gaston, Monique Gray Smith capture Victoria Book Prizes for 2018

Butler Book Prize and Bolen Books Children’s Book Prize winners collect $5,000 each

Canada’s country music sweetheart brings The Gumboot Kids to town

Jessie Farrell to perform songs from her hit CBC TV series at McTavish Academy of Arts

VIFF wrap-up: Finely crafted films part of festival finale

Monday reviewer Kyle Wells puts a cap on his 2018 Vancouver International Film Festival experience

WATCH: Twelve Angry Jurors puts a new spin on an old tale

Canadian College of Performing Arts opens season with reworked version of Reginald Rose teleplay

CRUSH 2018: Fine wine affair benefits the Belfry Theatre

Patrons sample B.C. wines, bid on rare international treasures donated for fundraiser

Harry and Meghan travel in different style on Australia tour

Prince Harry and his wife Meghan are on day seven of their 16-day tour of Australia and the South Pacific.

WATCH: Twelve Angry Jurors puts a new spin on an old tale

Canadian College of Performing Arts opens season with reworked version of Reginald Rose teleplay

INDY FILM FARE: 1970s hedonism and more at The Vic Theatre

From Studio 54 to Rocky Horror, there’s plenty of excess to observe this month

Shark-attack metal band coming to Victoria tonight

Shark Infested Daughters, a Calgary metalcore group, play the Upstairs Cabaret tonight, Oct. 13

STAGE AND SONG: Spotlight on Victoria arts groups

Learn about some of the city’s favourite theatre and musical entertainment options

Island lensman Jim Decker lands three top photography awards

During exciting photo trip to Yap in Micronesia, Cobble Hill man earns trio of firsts

Most Read