by Paula Citron
Lance Woolaver’s World Without Shadows at the Blyth Festival is an example of a play that should have been richer than it is because the subject is fascinating.
Folk artist Maud Lewis, who died in 1970 at age 67, was Canada’s Grandma Moses, and she had a dreadful life. She was physically deformed and lived in a shack in rural Nova Scotia with an emotionally abusive and miserly husband. Yet her sunny, charming paintings depict nothing of her hardships.
Woolaver comes in late in Lewis’ life when her husband Ev is exploiting her as a cash cow who brings in money. I wanted to know more about Maud and Ev’s early relationship.
Randy Hughson and Anne Anglin do lovely jobs as the sinner and saint Ev and Maud. Gill Garratt’s direction is crisp and Shawn Kerwin’s design is suitably whimsical. The play, however, is too one dimensional in its exposition.
World Without Shadows continues until Sept. 1.
From the Blyth Festival, I’m Paula Citron, arts reviewer for CLASSICAL 96.3 FM.