May 25 to June 11, 2006
CAST
(in order of appearance)
DAVID HAINES
ALEXANDER GOODALL
COREY HAFEZI
CAMERON McKINNON
DAVID LENNICK
LOUISE CASCONE
SCOTTY NEWLANDS
CLINTON SOMERTON
DAVID HAINES
LARRY GIBBS
SUSAN SANDERS
JOANNA MEGRAW
STEPHANIE DOUGLAS
ASHLEY KAYTES
ELIZABETH ROSE MORRISS
HEATHER GOODALL
KELLY SANDERS
VINCE CASCONE
JOE CASCONE
Funny Things Happen at Fairview
Friday June 2, 2006
Theatre review by Mark Andrew Lawrence

Stephen Sondheim has always claimed that melodrama and farce are his two favourite forms of theatre.
Surprisingly, the only farce he set to music is the 1962 Tony Award winner
A Funny Thing Happened On The Way
To The Forum
.

The Civic Light Opera Company is presenting
Forum as their final musical of the 2006-07 season at Fairview
Library Theatre.  The production easily lives up to the promise of it’s opening number “Comedy Tonight.”

This madcap musical drawing on all the stock characters of the roman comedies of Plautus was devised a scenario
for vaudevillians by authors Larry Gelbart and Burt Shevelove.

Originally written for Phil Silvers, it was actually Zero Mostel who opened the show on Broadway.  Since then
everyone from Frankie Howard to Nathan Lane to Whoopi Goldberg has had a chance to play Pseudolus, the
conniving slave intent on gaining his freedom.

Here, it affords
David Haines a chance to give the kind of broad comic portrayal in which he excels. On stage for
virtually the entire show,
Haines pours such enthusiasm into the role that it can’t help but energize the rest of the
talented troupe.

Among them is
Clinton Somerton as the frenzied slave Hysterium, a perfect foil for Haines.  The two make the
second act reprise of the duet “Lovely” into a scene of pure lunacy.  

Broadcaster
David Lennick makes an impressive stage debut as the henpecked husband Senex trying desperately to
arrange a dalliance under the watchful eye of his shrewish wife Domina, played here by
Louise Cascone.

As their teen-aged son Hero,
Scotty Newlands is given a chance to display his wonderful singing voice as well as his
flair for comedy. The object of his affection is Philia, played with a light, slightly daffy charm by
Kelly Saunders.

Joe Cascone portrays the vainglorious Captain Miles Gloriosus with the proper self-centred egotism. Cascone also
directed the show with tight precision, designed the show’s masterful set and amusing costumes, and has written
the detailed and fascinating program notes that have become one of the hallmarks of Civic Light Opera Company
productions. He is greatly assisted by lighting designer Greg Poulin who has managed to find a way to keep the stage
awash in colour and light, and by musical director
Liane Fainsinger. She keeps the six-piece ensemble in perfect
balance with the singers letting Sondheim’s devilishly clever lyrics come through with clarity.

The best thing about
Forum is that fact that no matter how many times you may have seen it before, the performers
always bring something new to the proceedings. That, plus the plot has so many twists and turns that it always
seems fresh, and as promised in the opening number we do get a happy ending. Of course.
Prologus, an actor
The Proteans


Senex,
a citizen of Rome
Domina, his shrewish wife
Hero, their son
Hysterium, their slave
Pseudolos, slave to Hero
Marcus Lycus, a procurer
Tintinabula, a courtesan
Panacea, a courtesan
Vibrata, a courtesan
The Geminae, courtesans

Gymnasia, a courtesan
Philia, a virgin
Erronius, a senile old man
Miles Gloriousus, a warrior