Stage West Calgary Review - The Outsider
A comedy by Paul Slade Smith, the writer of “Unnecessary Farce”
Review by Karen Lee
Are you afraid that a play about politics will be too serious or depressing? Lay those fears to rest. "The Outsider" is the new play at Stage West and you are guaranteed to laugh. This play contrasts empty, meaningless, political cliches with honest people and meaningful communication. It shows the struggle between the two in a fast-paced farce pitching political caricatures against those who are dedicated to doing a good job. The first half of the play sets the scene - introducing the characters along with some laughs. The second half brings the message home - shallow word bites win the day - and leaves us all with "no, no" echoing in our heads. The true message sneaks in while you are guffawing at the antics of Miss Peakes, played by talented actress Adrienne Merrell, who steals the show. The play is very well cast with veteran actors such as David LeReaney and Mark Weatherley taking lead roles and great supporting performances by Mark Crawford, Kathryn Kerbes, Robert Klein and Camille Pavlenko. Though done in a humorous way, this play will leave you with some questions - and realizations - about present day political leaders.
This is classic dinner theatre fare and, as such, the buffet is lavish and delicious.
Synopsis: In politics, the less you know, the higher you’ll go! At once a razor-sharp comedy and a sincere tribute to democracy, The Outsider is a timely and hilarious take on modern politics.
In the midst of a political scandal, Ned Newley, the ultimate policy wonk, is unexpectedly thrust into the position of Governor. Ned Newley doesn’t even want to be Governor. He has no political instincts, a paralyzing fear of public speaking, and his poll numbers are impressively bad. Ned might be the worst candidate to ever run for office. Unless the public is looking for… the worst candidate ever to run for office.
Politics is a visual medium. People vote for idiots who look like leaders. But Ned Newley is a new phenomenon: a leader… who looks like an idiot.
Show runs from February 14 – April 19, 2020
Tickets available at www.stagewestcalgary.com