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Bear with me: Sun Bear @ParkTheatre

If The Light House is an uplifting tale of survival, Sarah Richardson’s Sun Bear gives a contrasting take on this. Sarah plays Katy. We’re introduced to Katy as she runs through a list of pet office peeves with her endlessly perky coworkers, particularly about coworkers stealing her pens. It’s a hilarious opening monologue that would have you wishing you had her as a coworker to help relieve you from the boredom of petty office politics.  But something is not quite right in the perfect petty office, where people work together well. And that is her. And despite her protesting that she is fine, the pet peeves and the outbursts are becoming more frequent. As the piece progresses, maybe the problem lies in a past relationship, where Katy had to be home by a particular hour, not stay out late with office colleagues and not be drunk enough not to answer his calls. Perhaps the perky office colleagues are trying to help, and perhaps Katy is trying to reach out for help. It has simple staging

Theatre: Clybourne Park

The first thing that strikes you about this Olivier-award winning play is how great the production looks. You feel like you are transported back into the 1950s in a living room fashionable for that time, and populated by people you would expect to see. As the play gets going however it becomes apparent that this is going to be a darkly comic night at the theatre that looks at property, neighbourhoods and the enduring value of real estate... It was worth finally getting a chance to see it before it ends its run...

To give too much away about the story would spoil the fun but it is inspired (and plays off) the the events that take place in A Raisin in the Sun. While I was not so convinced by the sentiment of the first act (which seems trite and overlong), the humour that comes from the skirmishes between the couples was hilarious. But the second act was like watching a different play. Here the comedy is relentless and explosive. The performances of the ensemble bring out the best of the material and the audience were in hysterics.

I'm not sure what the central message of the play is, but it sure made you leave feeling like you should buy some property in a neighbourhood that you may not feel like you belong in just to mix things up a little... It's playing now at Wyndham's theatre until early May...

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