A Likely Story
By Teatro La Quindicina
June 6 to 22
10329 83 Ave., Edmonton
Tickets: Start at $25, call 780-433-3399 or at www.teatroq.com
Teatro La Quindicina’s resident playwright Stewart Lemoine has a knack for writing ambiguous comedies. Take the title of his new world premiere A Likely Story, opening June 6 at Varscona Theatre.
The phrase, “a likely story,” has a double meaning. Say it one way and it suggests someone is telling the truth. Change the intonation and it shifts to sarcasm.
So which meaning is Lemoine referencing? At the moment he’s keeping the storyline under wraps, but he has offered a few hints.
“This is a play in which the play has no author. The story is told by the decisions made by characters. It starts off with a man sitting on a bench. He doesn’t know where he is. A lady comes up inquiring about a train platform. He then knows he’s at a train station. You fill in the picture and slowly the story takes shape,” said Lemoine.
“It’s a salute to how playwriting works. It’s still very specifically written, but if all goes well, it will look extremely spontaneous.”
The story, using simple lights and props, follows five characters on a train voyage. The company’s artistic producer, Jeff Haslam, plays the narrator overseeing the events while Mathew Hulshof changes multiple hats playing numerous characters.
“Jeff has done so many different characters and he has such confidence with language. As an actor with 30 years of experience, he has quite a bit of authority. And Matt makes big bold choices, and he commits to physicality. He has a different way of doing things that makes for exceptional performances,” Lemoine added.
Rachel Bowron, St. Albert Children’s Theatre former musical director, is also riding the train as Theo.
“She’s on a quest to get to a European city where she wants to break up with her boyfriend in as nice a way as possible,” explained Lemoine.
And St. Albert actress Jenny McKillop joins these unlikely companions as Barbara, a woman on her way to the city to see a play when she inadvertently steps onto the wrong train and goes on a cross-continental journey.
Vincent Forcier suits up as Cyril, a travelling grad student on his way to find information and complete his education.
“Instead of completing his education, he goes on an adventure.”
For Lemoine, A Likely Story is a perfect introduction to summer.
“Everyone likes travel and adventure. In summer everyone’s mind turns to holidays and the play is a suggestion. Here you have 90 minutes of travel, fun and a new experience.”