The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee promises rollicking fun at the Langham Court Theatre through Feb. 2. Courtesy Langham Court Theatre

REVIEW: Get your blood pumping with Spelling Bee

High-octane Langham Court play sure to break the winter doldrums, writes Sheila Martindale

By Sheila Martindale

Monday Magazine reviewer

While I have never been particularly enthused about a bunch of adults dressed as children and behaving like idiots, I must admit that The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is done very well by Langham Court Theatre.

Particularly outstanding is Kyle Kushnir, in a ridiculous outfit, and his insistence on his name being correctly pronounced. A huge amount of energy is contributed by this talented clown. The whole show, of course, is very high energy, with all the characters putting out an enormous amount of oomph.

The gold star for being the most interesting character in the most bizarre, but strangely attractive costume goes to Jen Wilde. You have to see the show to find out why!

On opening night, four guest characters of local significance were called up from the audience (after having been planted there, of course) to add to the fun. I imagine, (but don’t know) that these might be different each night, but Jack Knox and Keith Digby certainly added more humour to the production.

Singing, of course, is a hugely important component of this play and that is brilliantly executed by the rather large cast. How people can sing at the same time as twirling about the stage is something that I have always admired. Having said that, the volume of the music and the voices is slightly deafening at times – a tad too loud for the size of the auditorium and my liking.

Kind of unsettling is the fact many of the characters play more than one part, which leaves the audience in a bit of a muddle as to who is who, and I for one, found this a trifle distracting. But no matter, this production is a perfect way to chase away the winter blues if you need jerking out of the doldrums!

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee runs at the Langham Court Theatre now through Feb. 2. Call 250-384-2142 to reserve tickets, send an email to boxoffice@langhamtheatre.ca or stop by the box office. For other information, visit langhamtheatre.ca.

Live theatre

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID Creations opens at the Art Gallery

Rental and sales exhibition features works by 34 local artists

Daniel Lapp’s West Coast Kitchen Party

Join BC’s highly renowned fiddler and folk artist Daniel Lapp for a… Continue reading

Emily Carr show wraps up Canadian Tour at Royal BC Museum

Fresh Seeing opens with exclusive addition of T’anuu

Antimatter festival adapts

Hybrid model brings 100 films

Nanaimo singer Elise Boulanger releases her new single, ‘Cigarettes et rosé’ on Oct. 11. (Photo courtesy Laura Baldwinson)
Nanaimo singer releasing new single inspired by overheard conversations

Elise Boulanger to unveil ‘Cigarettes et rosé,’ accompanying ukulele tutorial video to come

Lee Porteous will be one of the performers at the Duncan Showroom’s storytelling event later this month. (Photo Submitted)
Duncan Showroom hosts storytellers series

Monthly shows will be broadcast live on YouTube

The 2020 City of Victoria Youth Poet Laureate Neko Smart will give up her seat for the next young poet in January. (Contributed/ Jeremy Loveday)
Nominations open for Victoria’s 2021 Youth Poet Laureate

Honourary one-year term reserved for region’s emerging poets

Joëlle Rabu and Nico Rhodes present No Regrets, a live-streamed and in-person show featuring the songs of French singer Édith Piaf at the Port Theatre on Oct. 17. (Photo courtesy Vital Image)
Nanaimo mother-son duo pay tribute to Édith Piaf in Nanaimo

Vocalist Joëlle Rabu and pianist and arranger Nico Rhodes present ‘No Regrets’ show Oct. 17

Local poets Ian Cognito and Pat Smekal are releasing their latest collection, ‘Old Bones and Battered Bookends.’ (Photo courtesy Literacy Central Vancouver Island/Image by Jacques Gamelin)
Nanaimo area poets release anthology on aging

Ian Cognito and Pat Smekal present ‘Old Bones and Battered Bookends’

The Arts Alive sculpture Winds of Time by Linda Lindsay which sat in front of the Pharmasave on Oak Bay Avenue in 2019 has been purchased anonymously and will be mounted in the King George Terrace parking lot. (Photo from OakBay.ca)
Winds of Time breezes onto Oak Bay lookout

Donor bought Arts Alive sculpture for Oak Bay lookout

Campbell River author tries out new genre for upcoming trilogy

Kristin Butcher kept her book grounded in real world, with some fantastical elements

Nanaimo psychedelic rock band marks 10th anniversary with new release

Moths and Locusts’ new LP ‘Exoplanets’ includes recordings made over the last 10 years

Most Read