The Arts

Stratford Festival 2009 – Cyrano de Bergerac

Stratford Festival 2009 – Cyrano de Bergerac featured image

reviewed by Paula Citron
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Cyrano de Bergerac
Stratford Festival
Written by Edmond Rostand (adapted by Anthony Burgess)
Directed by Donna Feore
Starring Colm Feore, Mike Shara, Amanda Lisman, John Vickery, Wayne Best and Steve Ross
At the Festival Theatre until Nov. 1

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Cyrano de Bergerac premiered in 1897, but its heart is in the classic French baroque theatre of Racine and Corneille. It is all about poetic language.

While director Donna Feore’s over-busy, superficial Sratford production is enjoyable, she and the cast never come to grips with the magnificence of Rostand’s poetry. Those who want a classical experience will be disappointed with this lesser vessel. As for the emotional heart of the play, it is simply not there.

Colm Feore is an entertaining if colloquial Cyrano. Mike Shara is a truly great Christian because he gives a three dimensional bite to that thankless role. You believe he is a gallant soldier – just one who has trouble with words.

The big problem is Amanda Lisman’s Roxanne. She’s just awful – no mystique, no chemistry, no charm, no nothing. In a play that is a three way street, Roxanne must hold her own.

Cyrano de Bergerac continues at the Festival Theatre until Nov. 1.

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