Thursday Theatre Review: 36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls

36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls, a production of Birdtown and Swanville, is showing at the Tranzac Club until this Sunday.

As you would expect from the title of the show, it consists of several (I would imagine 36, but I didn't count...) little vignettes, each lasting somewhere in the 1 - 3 minute mark. The Little Plays all had interwoven storylines and repeating characters, so it wasn't as disjointed as you might imagine. What you might not expect from the title (or, at least, what I didn't expect) is that it is funny. I was concerned it would be over the top angst ridden drama, but happily I found myself laughing during the show. Not to say there weren't serious moments, but it wasn't the entire show.

My show partner for this one was Mandy, who loves the arts, but tells me that she is much more likely to be found in a gallery than a theatre.

Mandy enjoyed the show and said that really her favourite part of it was the concept of the show. She liked the idea of exploring things that were so imbued with intensity when they happen to us, but when put up on display really don't seem to be nearly as big a deal.

When I mentioned that for me the favourite part was a tie between the transitions between each play (set changes done by characters in the show) and the use of cardboard as set dressing, taking the place of everything from a magazine to a belt, a chair to a calculator, it really was excellent and fitting set-dressing.

Mandy felt like sometime the interplay between actors was a bit forced and didn't enjoy that part. I can see what she meant. I think that was actually a technique, there is an element of cartoon to the whole show, and I think this was just part of it, but I can also see how it wouldn't be for everyone.

Personally, my biggest challenge was the start time. The show starts at 9pm and runs a bit over 2 hours, which I have to admit is pushing it for me 'on a school night'. It would be okay for a Friday or Saturday, but it made getting up for work the next morning pretty difficult.

For $10 a ticket, I would recommend the show for a good cheap fun way to spend an evening.

- 36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls runs until Sunday August 26
- Playing at the Tranzac Club (292 Brunswick Avenue)
- Doors open at 8:45, showtime at 9pm (except Sunday - 1pm Matinee)
- Tickets are $10
- Reservations by emailing birdtownandswanville@gmail.com

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