peteg's blog - noise - theatre - 2015 02 23 TheSweeterOption

Strawdog Theatre Company: The Sweeter Option

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$28.00 + convenience charge of $3.00 = $31.00. Opening night, and with it, an open bar. I had the best beer on offer: a Revolution Eugene Porter, in a can. I hoofed it up to the Strawdog via City Grounds in the cold (-10C) but windless evening, so somewhat bearable. This was after hacking the PLDI paper all afternoon. I grabbed a quick dinner at the Asian Mix Cafe nearby, same as last time. Whatever the reviews say, their yellow curry noodle laksa thing is the bomb.

This was my first time behind Strawdog's red door, which is apparently their main space with superior seating. It was almost completely packed. From my seat at the front left, adjacent to where the actors flounced in and out, I spent a lot of time looking at the sides of actor's faces and the backs of their heads. After a while I realised that pretty much everyone sitting near and behind me must have as well.

This is another noir, putting me in mind of my last trip here (to see Desperate Dolls). The draw was Michaela Petro, last seen laughing like a drain in Ecstasy at A Red Orchid Theatre. A bonus was Emily Tate from Dead Accounts. The lead bloke (Sam Guinan-Nyhart) was pretty solid given the generally bewildering activity around him, especially when they changed sets: he wandered around looking dazed and confused as his world changed, and the ladies (of course) gave him those knowing looks.

I really wanted to enjoy this but ended up struggling to scratch the surface. Jackie Davies observes the out-of-order scenes: oh yeah, I got that, after a while. Justin Hayford at the Chicago Reader. Aaron Hunt notes the weak ending.