news | Wednesday November 19, 2014

Michel, Ti-Jean, and Verdun, QC in the Montreal Review of Books

See the Fall 2014 issue of the Montreal Review of Books for two reviews of recent Talon plays, Michel and Ti-Jean and Motherhouse, or read these excellent reviews online.

In Michel and Ti-Jean, a young Michel Tremblay travels to Florida to meet an aging Jack Kerouac, and the two hash out their shared cultural background, their hopes, and their hang-ups. In the words of reviewer Alexandria Haber,

By the end of the first act we realize that Tremblay didn’t ride the bus for a couple thousand kilometers simply to pay homage to his literary hero. He came to ask him to read his play. If Kerouac thinks it’s a good play, then Tremblay will believe it’s a good play. Tremblay will believe he is a real writer.

Playwright George Rideout has masterfully captured the voices of these two beloved writers, and offers a funny and touching rendering of their aspirations and failures as we can only imagine these men might have felt about them. Read the review online.

Reviewer Nikki Shaffeeullah writes that David Fennario’s anti-war, one-woman play, Motherhouse, “is more a poetic political essay told through a theatrical character than it is a theatrical exploration of character involving political themes.”

It paints a picture of working-class Verdun during World War I and the impact the war had on the community, particularly the women at home, left to labour in the British Munitions Supply Factory. Our narrator is a woman named Lillabit, although it seems Fennario’s true protagonist is the city of Verdun, itself a tragic hero of the Great War, and a site of warfare

Read the review online.

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