The Arts

Shaw Festival 2009 – Michel Tremblay's Albertine in Five Times

Shaw Festival 2009 – Michel Tremblay's Albertine in Five Times featured image

reviewed by Paula Citron

Albertine in Five Times
Shaw Festival
Written by Michel Tremblay (translated by Linda Gaboriau)
Directed by Micheline Chevrier
Starring Marla McLean, Jenny L. Wright, Mary Haney, Wendy Thatcher, Patricia Hamilton and Nicola Correia-Damude
At the Court House until Oct. 10


Michel Tremblay is one of Quebec’s most important playwrights, and kudos to the Shaw Festival for presenting Albertine in Five Times. The fine production also boasts a new and lyrical translation by Linda Gaboriau. Teresa Przybylski’s abstract representational set works well with Marc Desormeaux’s original moody music.

Albertine is filled with guilt and rage, a single, working class mother who sees herself as someone who never got the breaks. The surreal play features five different actresses portraying Albertine at various stages of her life. What is fascinating is how they interact together so that we get a collision of memories all at the same time. The sixth person is Albertine’s sister, a foil because she rose above her poor beginnings.

The one thing the Shaw Festival ensemble has is depth in the ranks, and director Micheline Chevrier has woven these six strong actresses into a seamless emotional web of past and present.

Albertine in Five Times continues at the Court House Theatre until Oct. 10.

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