By KIRAN MALIK-KHAN, Connect Contributor
The problem with producing a play that is also a Hollywood blockbuster is, well, it will be compared to the said blockbuster. Keyano Theatre Company’s (KTC) first 4-Play Drama Series production of the season – A Few Good Men – ran the same risk, but saw some fine acting as it opened on October 2, 2015.
A Few Good Men is Aaron Sorkin’s famous play centred on a scintillating courtroom drama. When two American marines are accused of murder, it is one rookie lawyer’s job to unearth the conspiracy surrounding the seemingly open and shut case.
Director Dave Horak, led a professional team of staff and talented local actors for the KTC production. Brodie Dransutavicius was brilliant as Daniel A. Kaffe, the central character, and the reluctant saviour of the two marines. He concentrated on bringing originality to a character famously played by Tom Cruise. His apt delivery of witty one-liners helped strengthen the role.
Mark Armstrong, well-known from his work at 100.5 Cruz FM shone as Jack Ross, the prosecutor, while Zachary Barrett brought his usual outstanding acting skills to the characters of Judge Randolph, and Isaac Whitaker.
Dave Boutilier emerged as the delightful surprise of the night (for this writer). He brought a certain charisma to the role of Nathan Jessup, who lies at the heart of the conspiracy. Sometimes channeling his inner Jack Nicholson, but more often bringing his own flair to the character – Boutilier was memorable.
With extensive theatre experience, his “roots lie in Sydney’s Boardmore Theatre,” as per his official biography, where he directed, acted, and also wrote before moving to Fort McMurray.
Sam Weinburg, Daniel A. Kaffe’s trustee side-kick was smartly played by Chris Bowers who brought a melange of humour, and being the voice of reason to the character. Michelle Daley’s court room scene as Corporal Michelle Howard was commendable.
The play suffered when characters heavily channeled movie characters in the First Act. The Second Act proved to be redeeming as Diana Moser, who played Joanne Galloway, Kaffe’s co-counsel, became more confident.
Seth Lavigne, newcomer to Fort McMurray, but not to theatre was impressive as Harold Dawson, one of the defendants. Michael Parr, did a great job as Markinson, proving why he is a “sought after performer seen in operas, oratorios, musicals, and concerts throughout Canada.”
Rounding out the cast was Adam Zacharias as Louden Downey, Dawson’s co-defendant, who excelled onstage. And, Hanna Fridhed was passionate in performing ensemble characters.
Horak’s success as a director was evident when he chose to use original lines from the play, not heard in the movie before. T. Erin Gruber’s set and lighting design excellently complemented the military theme.
There are two more performances left on October 9 and 10 at 8 p.m. For tickets, visit Keyano Theatre’s Box Office or go to: www.keyano.ca/theatre.
– Connect Weekly –