The Arts

Shaw Festival 2009 – Shaw’s The Devil’s Disciple

Shaw Festival 2009 – Shaw’s The Devil’s Disciple featured image

reviewed by Paula Citron
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The Devil’s Disciple
Shaw Festival
Written by George Bernard Shaw
Directed by Tadeusz Bradecki
Starring Evan Buliung, Fiona Byrne, Peter Krantz, Donna Belleville, Jim Mezon, Peter Millard, Richard Stewart and Jonathan Widdifield
At the Festival Theatre until Oct. 11
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When Polish director Tadeusz Bradecki is on his game, he is wonderful. The good news is that his production of Shaw’s The Devil’s Disciple is outstanding. In fact, it is a run don’t walk.

The sly play is set in the American colonies in 1777, and Shaw wrote it as a spoof on melodrama. All the conventions of melodrama are present except, of course, Shaw has turned everything upside down. Americans in the audience were particularly enjoying the droll commentary about the founding of their nation.

Evan Buliung is perfect as the scallywag Richard Dudgeon, while Fiona Byrne and Peter Krantz are wonderful as his foils. Jim Mezon steals the show as the witty and wise General Burgoyne, while Jonathan Widdifield gets his laughs as Dudgeon’s dopey brother Christy. Donna Belleville and Peter Millard do their usual good work.

The Devil’s Disciple is the hit Shaw play of the season.

The Devil’s Disciple continues at the Shaw Festival Theatre until Oct. 11.

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