2nd Story Theatre's opening show of their upstage season is "Dangerous Corner" by J.B. Priestly. Robert and Freda Caplan are entertaining guests at their country retreat with a gossipy, nosy author, Miss Mockeridge thrown in among the guests at this party. A chance remark by one of the guests ignites a series of devastating revelations, revealing a hitherto undiscovered tangle of clandestine relationships and dark secrets, the disclosures of which have tragic consequences. Once benign party banter shifts to the tragic death of a mutual friend, masks of innocence are ripped off. Robert discovers lies, theft and betrayal mixed up with a world of drugs and forbidden passion. However Priestly supplies a surprising twist to this drawing room melodrama that was well ahead of its time, having been written in 1932. He examines how events can take two different paths and how the truth of past events can be either good or bad, so be careful what you do and say. The consequences of your actions may not be what you really want or like. Ed Shea takes his talented 7 member cast on a roller coaster ride in this well written melodrama. It still keeps the audiences interest 83 years after it was written. We all learn some things are better left being unknown and unspoken for the good of one and all.
Ed blocks the show beautifully and gives each of his performers their moment to shine in this well written and well acted show. Priestly allows us to witness his playing with time and truth to witness the morality or lack thereof from these well to do people. One of the funniest performers in this show is Luis Astudillo as Miguel Alonzo, an unethical partner in the publishing house. Miguel is a confirmed bachelor but enjoys fooling around with the women. He also likes to sleep with other men's wives, steal money among other misdeeds. Luis' timing is perfect and his delivery of the lines with a Spanish accent is phenomenal. He delivers an entrancing performance. Wayne Kneeland and Tania Montenegro play the Caplan's. Wayne runs the gamut of emotions in this role after finding out about his brother's naughty behavior. Robert opens up a can of worms when he demands the truth from the others which leads to some starling revelations. His relationship with his wife and colleagues becomes changed afterwards. Tania as the long suffering wife caught in a loveless marriage delivers the goods in her role. Another winning performance is by Tanya Anderson as Olween. This character knows the truth and when she reveals it the explosive results are alarming. Tanya delivers a strong nuanced performance in this role.
Nicholas Thibeault also shines as the distraught third partner, Gordon Whitehouse who seems very upset about Robert's brother's death. He takes the news of this the hardest and Nicholas' argument scenes with the other performers is very well done. Lian-Marie Munro, is a spitfire who proclaims as Betty Whitehouse that people view her as a girl but she is a woman. Her proclamation of this points out she is more worldly wise than the others think of her. Paula Faber rounds out the cast as the well known author who is dining with the Caplans and her innocent question about the brother of Robert, sets things into motion in the very first scene. The awesome Art Deco set of the 1930's is by Trevor Elliott. The breathtaking gorgeous brocade gowns are by Ron Cesario. So for a trip back to the 1930's in spectacular fashion, be sure to catch "Dangerous Corner" at 2nd Story Theater. The twists and turns of the story will keep you on the edge of your seats until the final moment.