Victoria College Drama Society’s final evening show A Little Bit of Laughter wrapped up on November 3 at the Isabel Theatre. The event consisted of two comedy plays Hard Candy and Hidden in this Picture.
Performed in the strikingly first-class quality of Isabel Bader Theatre, high-tech lighting, wonderful seating and terrific sound quality made it easy to be seduced by the venue alone. Unfortunately, this meant that the barren stage of both plays was an unfortunate eyesore. Written by Jonathan Rand, Hard Candy was directed by Nick Charalambu, and is regarded as the third most popular high-school production in 1999-2000 by the International Thespian Society. A fun and silly look at the ruthlessness of the corporate world, Hard Candy consists of interview after interview at pseudo-company Banff Enterprises, as one zany character after another comes in looking for work. Some scenes didn’t work quite as well as hoped, yet the play was amusingly performed. The acting was consistent, but no one stole the show—as a group they pulled off a very decent performance.
Hidden In This Picture by Aaron Sorkin (screenplay writer for A Few Good Men and The American President) was directed by Jessica Ward. The play takes place around the final few minutes of filming of a very expensive movie production. A director is watching the best scene he’s ever directed take place unfold before him. As he’s watching, three cows enter the scene and choose to stay. Their presence is a major hindrance to the proceedings. Watching the actors convey the angst, denial, creativeness, and desperation of the characters as they try to salvage the scene made this play enduringly funny.
During the course of the evening, the audience was subject to two Masters of Ceremonies who did not seem particularly necessary. At the beginning and end of each play, the two directors came out and gave little spiels before announcing the next show or intermission. The material did not seem that relevant, but by judging the cheers and howls of the audience,I suspect I was in the minority in my opinion. Still, they did not ruin a fun evening.