Predictable ‘Maggie’s Getting Married’ is still amusing

A trickle-down case of pre-wedding jitters affects every member of the stressed-out Duncan clan in Central Alberta Theatre’s production of Maggie’s Getting Married.

A trickle-down case of pre-wedding jitters affects every member of the stressed-out Duncan clan in Central Alberta Theatre’s production of Maggie’s Getting Married.

This somewhat predictable, but still amusing Norm Foster comedy, which opened Friday night at City Centre Stage in downtown Red Deer, starts on the eve of bride-to-be Maggie’s wedding.

Nicey-nice Maggie (Kathleen Smith), who still lives with her parents at age 29, is fretting about her sexpot sister, Wanda, potentially stealing her fiancé — as she did all her boyfriends since high school.

The fact that her groom-to-be (Gord Phillips) is a rather boring real estate agent named Russell doesn’t lessen Maggie’s anxiety at all — go figure.

Father-of-the-bride Tom (Craig Scott) begins brooding about his own mortality as he ponders his daughter’s pending nuptials.

Since his family history is rife with relatives who croak in middle age, Tom suspects his youngest daughter is marrying a gold digger who’s just waiting for him to kick the bucket before he moves in on her inheritance.

Meanwhile, mother-of-the-bride Cass (Laura Geelen) is unhappily diverted by Wanda’s new “heathen” of a boyfriend.

She discovers that Axel the actor is involved in a racy stage adaptation of Peter Pan that she dubbs “Peter Porn.” Cass worries Axel (Konstantin Cody Vorosmarty) will offend the officiating reverend, causing him to walk out before the ceremony begins.

And sister-of-the-bride Wanda (Dawn Hastie), well, she has the Mother of all Worries.

When the maid of honour finally meets the man her sister is going to marry, she believes that she has, um, shall we say, previous and rather intimate knowledge of the same groom-to-be.

Can the Duncan clan resolve all their various anxieties and move forward with the blessed union?

Anyone who’s seen the umpteen Foster comedies CAT has put on over the years will know the answer to that one, but why not see the play anyway?

This fast-paced production, directed by Judith Moody, contains a few laugh-out-loud jokes, and has the potential to serve up even more once cast members loosen up and further hone their comic timing.

While some actors in Maggie’s Getting Married are fairly new to theatre, by the end of the first act they managed, at moments, to give the impression of being a family.

In other words, they relaxed enough in each other’s presence to convey the kind of casualness that’s naturally displayed to those we are closest to.

The cast could go further in this direction, and no doubt will over the course of the play’s run.

Particular stand-outs are Vorosmarty as Axel, who delivers the comedy’s funniest line in reference to why powerful women make him squirm, and Phillips, who as a real-life real estate agent, is able to give square Russell the gift of the gab that makes him oddly endearing.

While Scott has been in a number of previous CAT plays, Tom is his best role yet.

As Maggie’s dad he displays a warm humour — and even pulls off a tender moment, as Tom struggles with sending the more innocent of his daughters off with a man he doesn’t really know.

Lastly, good work, CAT set crew. You have really risen to the challenge of filling the larger stage at the new venue. (There’s even a starry night sky visible through the Duncan family’s kitchen windows).

lmichelin@bprda.wpengine.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta is on pace to administer more than 300,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses per week, according to the provincial government. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
One million COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in Alberta

Alberta hit a milestone in the fight against COVID-19 this week. As… Continue reading

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre’s expansion project is still a high priority, says Alberta Infrastructure Minister Prasad Panda. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Interior work will start this year on Red Deer hospital project, says infrastructure minister

‘We are committed. This is a top priority,’ says Presad Panda

Even with recent restrictions due to rising COVID-19 variant case levels, about 95 per cent of businesses are open in Alberta, said Premier Jason Kenney. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Consistent pandemic policy has helped Alberta, premier says

Alberta fatality rate lower than Canadian average

Richie Laryea of Toronto FC, left, and Jean Meneses of Mexico's Leon battle for the ball during a CONCACAF Champions League soccer match in Leon, Mexico, in Leon, Wednesday, April 7, 2021. Toronto FC hosts Club Leon in the second leg of their Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League round-of-16 tie holding a valuable away goal after a 1-1 draw last week in Mexico. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Mario Armas
Injury-riddled Toronto FC dispatches Club Leon in CONCACAF Champions League play

Injury-riddled Toronto FC dispatches Club Leon in CONCACAF Champions League play

Winnipeg Jets' Dylan DeMelo (2) skates the puck around Ottawa Senators' Thomas Chabot (72) as he holds off Winnipeg Jets' Mason Appleton (22) during first-period NHL action in Ottawa on Wednesday, April 14, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Winnipeg Jets score two third-period goals to secure 3-2 victory over Ottawa Senators

Winnipeg Jets score two third-period goals to secure 3-2 victory over Ottawa Senators

Toronto Raptors forward Chris Boucher (25) shoots over San Antonio Spurs forward Keldon Johnson (3) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, April 14, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Anunoby, Siakam rally Raptors past Spurs 117-112

Anunoby, Siakam rally Raptors past Spurs 117-112

John Furlong pitches a broader B.C. bid for 2030 Winter Games

John Furlong pitches a broader B.C. bid for 2030 Winter Games

New York Yankees starting pitcher Corey Kluber throws against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 14, 2021, in Dunedin, Fla. (AP Photo/Mike Carlson)
Bichette hits 2nd homer in 9th, Blue Jays beat Yankees 5-4

Bichette hits 2nd homer in 9th, Blue Jays beat Yankees 5-4

Oklahoma City Thunder forward Luguentz Dort (5) goes to the basket as Utah Jazz forward Jarrell Brantley (5) defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, April 13, 2021, in Salt Lake City. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Rick Bowmer
Undrafted Montreal native Dort continues to smash “glass ceilings” in NBA

Undrafted Montreal native Dort continues to smash “glass ceilings” in NBA

A man wearing a protective mask to help curb the spread of the coronavirus walks past banners for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo, Wednesday, April 14, 2021, to mark 100 days before the start of the Summer Games. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Eugene Hoshiko
Rings on the Horizon: Tokyo Summer Olympics hit 100 days out marker

Rings on the Horizon: Tokyo Summer Olympics hit 100 days out marker

Lethbridge Police Chief Shahin Mehdizadeh speaks during a news conference in Lethbridge, Alta., on Wednesday, March 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/David Rossiter
‘Right path:’ Lethbridge police release improvement plan in wake of controversies

‘Right path:’ Lethbridge police release improvement plan in wake of controversies

Most Read