The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. UVic Phoenix Spotlight on Alumni October 9-18 2014. A review.

The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, the current UVic Phoenix “Spotlight on Alumni” (October 9-18, 2014) is a vigourous and spiritied re-telling of the timeless classic by CS Lewis.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to the popularity of this show, two additional performances have been added October 24th at 8pm and October 25th at 2pm.

Starring UVic grads Mack Gordon (BFA ’08) and Kaitlin Williams (BFA ’09) this production is a 90 minute adaptation by Ron Reed, Artistic Director of Vancouver’s Pacific Theatre.  Originally staged in the 1998-1999 season it has become a consistent part of this theatre’s repertoire, touring to cities throughout BC.

Situated eight years after the actual events in the Narnia series, it begins as Peter and Lucy come back to their Uncle Digory’s house in the country. Their imaginations take over, and they begin to remember the many adventures they experienced.

The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe at UVic Phoenix Theatre October 9-18 2014

 

With a simple set and minimal staging consisting of a wardrobe, chest, chair and light (set design Omanie Elias) Gordon and Williams bring the situations and characters of the story to life turning into fauns and beavers, witches and lions before our very eyes.  Actions and movement are carefully co-ordinated with a complex soundscape created by Corina Akeson and Jeff Tymoschuk to mimic the snick of knives being sharpened on stone, the calls of horns and battle cries, and cascades of running water.

Aslan, the ferocious yet gentle lion king of Narnia, is recreated using a taupe shawl that passes seamlessly from one actor to another while the evil White Witch appears dressed in a beautiful fur coat (costumes by Naomi Sider). In one of the most effective visual moments, Gordon manipulates shawl and fur coat to symbolize the ultimate defeat of the witch by the lion. Lighting (Lauchlin Johnston) pools on the floor to imitate the rugs in the beaver’s abode and alternates between the coziness of interiors like Mr Tumnus’ and the bleak reality of the frozen forest.

CS Lewis’ writing has enchanted generations of readers since first being published in 1950. Most audience members will remember days engrossed in the chronicles (there are seven in all) but even people unfamiliar with the story will enjoy the themes of good versus evil, forgiveness and redemption.

On opening night there were audience members as young as eight who remained rapt—captured by the spell of the action onstage—making this an ideal outing for parents and grandparents who are eager to introduce their offspring to live theatre. (There are also two matinée performances on the Saturdays of the run.) Although the story contains many violent moments, they are merely suggested rather than enacted in gory and gruesome detail that might induce nightmares in smaller children.

The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe is story-telling magic that will leave you enthralled.

The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe
Adapted from the novel by C.S. Lewis
October 9-18, 2014
Tickets
Adult: $24 Senior: $20 Student/Child: $16
Weekend Evenings: $24
(All seats on Friday and Saturday evenings)
Charge by phone: 250-721-8000
UVic Alumni: Pay student prices when you attend on Saturday matinee

Featuring Kaitlin Williams (BFA’09)
and Mack Gordon (BFA’ 08)

Set Designer  Omanie Elias
Costume Designer   Naomi Sider
Lighting Designer  Lauchlin Johnston
Sound Designers Corina Akeson & Jeff Tymoschuk
Stage Manager   Jaymee Sidel        

Save by purchasing a season’s subscription to the UVic Phoenix Theatre – at $48 for 4 plays and $36 for 3, it’s great value and a tangible way to support young emerging talent, the next generation of Canadian artists.

Performances

  • Evenings: October 9 – 18 @ 8pm, Tuesday to Saturdays
  • Matinees: Saturday October 11* and 18
  • Preview: Tuesday October 7 @ 8pm Tickets for public preview nights are $7 and come available at 5pm on the day of the performance. A Talkback Session will follow the preview night performance.
  • Opening Night: Thursday October 9 @ 8pm
  • Friday Night Lecture: Friday October 10 @ 7pm Before Friday night’s performance, join professor Jan Wood in conversation with alumni Mack Gordon and Kaitlin Williams talking about their life in theatre together as a married couple.
  • *Sign Language Interpretation: Saturday October 11 @ 2pm See details more details about this special performance here.

UVic Parking and Traffic Advisory:

The university will be paving and making repairs to Ring Road during our production of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. We highly recommend that you enter campus from Gordon Head Road using West Campus Way. (click to see map)

FULL CLOSURE of RING ROAD scheduled for Saturday, October 11 — All day (weather dependant).

The repair work and paving will run from October 10 to 24, 2014.Trafifc delays may be experienced and the road surface maybe uneven during this time.

Disclaimer: I was offered complimentary tickets to attend The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.

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