Review of 2010 debut

The 2010 debut of Kiss Within A Kiss didn't exactly shake the international theatre scene, but it did get a decent local review.

The complete review covered the entire 2010 Cradle to Stage production.  To see the complete review, scroll down to the link.  Otherwise, here it is the portion pertaining to our play, reprinted with the permission of the reviewer, Alix Kemp:

"Kiss Within a Kiss

Kiss Within a Kiss is a really adorable little piece about a girl who is about to have her first kiss — as part of a play. I think part of what makes this piece so charming is the play within a play within a play aspect; the audience is, in a sense, watching three separate performances simultaneously. This becomes particularly apparent during a prop malfunction early on in the piece; it only later becomes clear that this small failure is completely scripted.

The writing here is much stronger than in the first piece, and the two main actors, Stephany Wigston (Kathy, cast in the role of Julie) and David Johnston (Shawn, cast in the role of Ramsey), do an excellent job of balancing their dual roles. Wigston is especially convincing both as Kathy and as Julie.

My main problem with the piece, I think, came from my upbringing in the American midwest: I’m familiar with the real versions of the southern accents adopted by the characters of Julie and Ramsey, so I naturally notice when they aren’t quite perfect. Ramsey’s accent in particular didn’t quite hit the mark. This would be unforgivable if we were actually watching the play within a play, Swindled Love. But because we’re far more interested in the character of Shawn, who I’m willing to believe just can’t quite pull off that southern drawl, it works. And while I’d normally be all for dropping an accent that doesn’t quite work, it does actually add an important element to the play’s final moment, making the whole thing even more poignant and sweet than it might have been otherwise.

The humour throughout the whole thing was well-done; Kathy’s somewhat over-the-top descriptions of first kisses that didn’t quite happen had me nearly on the floor, as did Shawn’s embarrassment over a previous, far more erotic, play he’d performed in. And while Myra (played by Amanda Blair), Swindled Love’s bitchy stage manager, doesn’t have a role within the secondary play, she does an excellent job being incredibly abrasive, and exceptionally funny."

Reprinted with permission of the rights holder, Alex Kemp.

For the complete 2010 Cradle to Stage review go here.

© Jim Herchak 2012