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

WINE NOTES: Discovering valuable Spanish gems

Check out the Spain section of your local wine store, recommends Monday expert Robert Moyes

Victoria’s Oktoberfest brings out the Bavarian in all of us

Stein and Dine at Victoria Public Market celebrates German food, beverages, culture on Oct. 19

Restaurant Review: Authentic Mexican molé hits the spot

Restaurante la Tortilla Mexicana’s hearty, spicy sauce works well over enchiladas, writes Allan Reid

REVIEW: Mullins’ Weaksauce hits the mark, like a good hockey pass

UVic Fine Arts alumni and frequent CBC writer’s biographical storytelling show here through Oct. 19

Two local authors walk away with Victoria Book Prize

Kathy Page and Aidan Cassie each walked away with a literary award

Fashion Fridays: How to pose in photos

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra launches new season

First up: Celebrating the Concerto on Oct. 27

Trudeau to appear on Jessi Cruickshank’s Facebook Watch show ‘New Mom, Who Dis?’

Federal Liberal leader to do sit-down interview with Canadian media personality on Wednesday

‘Joker’ laughs its way to October box office record

Warner Bros. said “Joker” grossed an estimated $93.5 million in ticket sales from 4,374 screens in North America

Ginger Baker, Cream’s volatile drummer, dies at 80

Baker wielded blues power and jazz technique to help break open popular music in the 1960s

‘Interesting mixture of emotions’: Scott Moir reflects on final tour with Tessa Virtue

Multiple Olympic ice dance gold medallists skating through B.C. during the Rock the Rink tour

It’s onward and upward for Victoria gelato artisan

After winning Gelato Festival gold, Stefano Mosi will compete at North American finals in 2020

Most Read