40 Minute Classics: The Seagull

Anton Chekhov
Topcliffe House
Paradise in Augustines
to

Considered one of Chekhov’s best works, it is often referred to as a comedy. The concept of a 40-minute presentation of any full-length work is presumably to give the audience the story and a taste of the writing.

Tortured playwright Constantine has mounted a production of his latest work which will feature Ingenue Nina. But to get the audience of locals headed by his mother, the flamboyant actress Irina Arkadina, and her author Boris Trigorin to attend and be attentive proves too great a test for him. There is a greater and more involved story that follows.

Here the widely diverse talent of the Topcliff House ensemble does their best barely supported by soft direction in a script so poorly cut that it seems like exposition rather than story. The cast do their best; the actors playing Nina and Constantin make this worth seeing. Sadly, I saw it on its last day.

Reviewer: Catherine Lamm