The Arts

The Apology

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Reviewed by Paula Citron

The Apology
Next Stage Theatre Festival/Raviashna Productions
Written by Darrah Teitel
Directed by Audrey Dwyer
Featuring Kaitlyn Rordan, Brendan McMurtry-Howlett, Sascha Cole and David Beazely
Factory Theatre, Jan. 5 to 16, 2011

The Next Stage Theatre Festival always contains plays with interesting ideas. Such a one is The Apology by Darrah Teitel. She has fashioned her dialogue among a quartet of teenagers and twentysomethings, her concerns being anarchy and feminism.

Although they speak and dress in today’s colloquial language, they are anything but anonymous. They are the astonishingly gifted 17-year-old Mary Wollstonecraft and her lover, the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, and Wollstonecraft’s stepsister Claire, and her lover, the poet Lord Byron. The play catches them as they have just fled to Switzerland. Audrey Dwyer is fearless in her graphic direction.

The script needs editing. There is too much repetition, but on the main, The Apology is a fascinating portrait of rebellion and radicalism. Teitel brings out a great many issues that have relevance for today, and her acting company – Kaitlyn Riordan, Brendan McMurtry-Howlett, Sascha Cole and David Beazely – go for the emotional jugular.

Next Stage Theatre Festival continues at Factory Theatre until Jan. 16.

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