Monday, October 19, 2009

Melodramatic evening

Friday evening Andrew and I attended a dinner theatre event at Fort Edmonton Park. We decided this would be a part of our wedding anniversary celebrations this year. I can't quite remember how I stumbled upon the advertisement for the show, but I think I was poking around the City of Edmonton Website when I found it.

The show was preceded by a four-course meal (soup, salad, entree and desert). I hadn't been inside the Hotel Selkirk, the 1930s period hotel that runs in the Park, before. We both enjoyed the architecture of the old building, with it's fancy woodwork, antique items on display, and the bar was long and narrow like how you might expect in a old-fashion saloon to be built. We also enjoyed the dinner, starting with parsnip and apple soup--one of the few encounters I've had with parsnip that I actually found pleasing. Everyone at the table agreed the soup was sweet with either a hint of nutmeg or cinnamon. The salad was actually more like an antipasto, with grilled (but cooled) vegetables in a vinaigrette, then dinner was either duck or beef. Andrew and I both like duck, so we were happy to take that option, but a couple of other people pointed out that it might have been nice to have a third option of chicken. Desert was a little tricky. It was a frozen almond mousse, which really was frozen solid. Numerous people sent little bits of desert flying as they tried to dig it out of the dish. The mousse was definitely the least spectacular portion of the meal, but I still liked it well enough to finish it off.

The theatre part of the evening took place in the fire hall located across the road from the hotel. The play was a farcical, "slamming-doors" style production, where the idea was that the 5 actors in the play didn't know the others were staying in the abandoned hotel. Unfortunately, the only other "slamming-doors" style play I've seen is Noises Off, which I absolutely love, and so I felt this one paled in comparison. Also, a couple of lines/ideas were blatantly ripped-off ("I have a thing about violence, it makes my nose bleed. I also have a thing about blood..." (Freddy faints), Noises Off). Regardless of my thoughts about the writing, I thought the actors were quite good, better than the material in my opinion. They were very energetic, and the one actor who became "possessed" by a ghost did an excellent job.

Overall, it was a fun evening and would recommend it to others.



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