Please note that this website has not undergone any active development since 2011 and is scheduled to be retired.
Home Users Companies Events Want Ads Courses Reviews Venues Weather Search Contact
  Welcome, guest.  (Need an account?)
User ID:   Password:  

The Beverly Block
Presented by Theatre Anywhere


Reviewed: 2009-07-17 11:10:00
By: Leila Marston (

This is the story of that apartment you wish you could forget: the one with debris and beer bottles everywhere, where nobody ever has money, where one guy is glued to a video game controller, another dude comes over to "borrow" things all the time, and people wander in and out at all hours of the night.  It's messy, chaotic, and claustrophobic, but never dull.

I give high marks to the playwright for constructing a thoroughly entertaining, frighteningly true-to-life story; the work is gritty and engaging, and if it seems a little long, it's because certain parts of the play had me squirming in my seat, wanting to smack some of the characters and yell, "No!  Bad idea!"

This feeling of intense involvement in the story comes from a set that made me feel as though I were looking in on the apartment from another room, but more so from the strong performances of the entire cast, both individually and as an ensemble.  The central couple of the play skillfully portray a relationship filled with tension and antagonism, with some surprisingly tender moments.  I especially enjoyed the performances of Claire Friesen, who showed alternating listlessness, anger, and sadness in her situation without once descending into maudlin whining, and Jeff Wahl, who played a perfect specimen of That Guy: the one who inspires a grudging liking, despite the fact that he's fairly moronic and is always mooching stuff.

The ending is taut and ambiguous, the seeming "resolution" of the story worrisome for the characters' future.  The Beverly Block leaves the viewer questioning where the fault or solution lies on a societal level, and also aptly shows that not every conflict is a learning experience or a path to higher growth for the individuals involved.  It's a complex, interesting offering to this year's Fringe, and one well worth the time to see.

This review has been viewed 1261 times.

NOTE: Posted reviews reflect the opinions of their respective authors, and are subject to the Terms of Service (TOS). Individuals with differing viewpoints are welcome to register an account, and submit their personal reviews.

Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival
Quote of the Moment
"My only love sprung from my only hate! Too early seen unknown, and known too late!"
-- Juliet (Romeo and Juliet)

Proudly Canadian

Valid HTML 4.01!

  Pageview 1,843,216 generated in ~0.009 secs at 8:10 AM
Copyright © 2004 - 2011 Merlyn Productions. All Rights Reserved.
Usage of this website is subject to the Terms of Service (TOS).