; Fun! Fun! Vancouver!: Lowest Common Denomintator

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Lowest Common Denomintator

The folks at Zee Zee Theatre Company have done it again. They've brought us an outstanding original piece that will delight, provoke, and devastate. Dave Deveau's Lowest Common Denominator (directed by Cameron Mackenzie) is a welcome addition to the Canadian drama canon. What happens when a mother brings home a date, only to have her son hit on him? Oh but it's so much more than that. It's a coming out journey for one character, a mid-life crisis of sorts for another, and a mix of humiliation and anger and overbearing motherly love for the other.

Direction is wonderful, as the audience is taken from reality to dream sequence effortlessly, mixing in humour to lighten up the intensity of the situation. The play brings up important questions, including that of a large age gap between two partners. Does age actually matter when it comes to love? Or is it a restriction put on by society's so-called norms?

The acting was tremendous for all three players involved. Dallas Sauer (whom I recognized from Studio 58's Spring Awakening last year) is charming and funny and whose portrayal of a gay son coming out to his mother made me envy their relationship (until later, when all hell breaks loose). Shawn Macdonald's Peter is the perfect mixture of tenderness and authority and level-headedness, approaching the situation he's embroiled in from all angles and acknowledging that none of this is easy for anybody involved, while still staying true to his own emotions and heartache. Then we have the tour de force of Deborah Williams, whose buoyant personality and blind motherly rage take up the entire room. She has the amazing ability to flip that switch between comedic realness and high drama, without skipping a beat.

The lowest common denominator is this: the play is a wonderful piece of theatre not to be missed.

Lowest Common Denominator is on now until March 30th at the PAL Theatre (581 Cardero). Buy your tickets online here or call 604-684-2787.

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