Well the cast & crew of Scarborough Music Theatre’s “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” certainly gave me what I wanted (and needed) after driving through treacherous snow for an hour to get to the theatre: a couple of hours full of laughter and one hell of a rowdy 50/50 draw!
Rich Burdett starts off the show with his strong, tall presence in a well-tailored suit. He plays Lawrence Jameson, who runs a big con game on the French Riviera by seducing rich, stupid women. Rich has an ease on stage and no matter how hard you try to catch him, he doesn’t look like he’s having to think about what he’s doing at all. It’s natural for him. I’ve seen him a few times in shows and it’s always like that. Give him a role, he works hard, conquers it and then it just flows right outta him.
Ok, I’ll admit it… I have a little show crush on Carson Betz. I don’t know where you came from (the USA, according to your bio), but please stay here in the GTA, do more shows and let me know when they are! I’m a big fan of the original Michael Caine/Steve Martin film and absolutely LOVED Steve Martin in the role of Freddy. I was a little nervous that whoever I saw was just not gonna cut it. But, and I’m sorry for this Steve Martin, I think Carson may have just beat you out of a role. His comedic timing was nothing short of brilliant. He had quick and dirty digs all over the place and caught me off guard, had me laughing awkwardly out loud (much to the chagrin of the lady to my right) and charmed his way into my heart with his orange t-shirt and pink-patterned boxer shorts. When Carson & Rich had scenes together, they were completely captivating. What a great pair of performers!
Now let’s move on to the ladies of the show: Jill McMillan started us off as Muriel Eubanks and dazzles us with her low, sultry tones in “What Was a Woman To Do”. Her surprising love affair later in the show was hysterical! Next came Hayley Goldenberg as the adorable, ignorant Oklahoman, Jolene. She is quite the character actress and the cramp I feel in my side from laughing so hard is because of her during “All About Ruprecht”. And last but certainly not least, along came SMT’s sweetheart Ms. Katie Wise as the charming and disarming Christine Colgate. It takes a while for the character of Christine to appear and once she did I saw a noticeable change in both Rich & Carson. Once Katie came on stage they stepped up their game big time and the chemistry between Rich & Katie, Carson & Katie, Carson & Rich and Katie, Carson & Rich, was really quite amazing! They gelled together so well.
Additional shout outs:
- To Chris Warmerdam for designing a simply beautiful set. It set the time period, location and needs of the cast to a tee.
- To David Buffham for lighting Chris’ set just as beautifully. There were some particularly lovely looks throughout the show that really helped to create the many hilarious scenes and gorgeous French moods required.
- To John Palmieri who was a damn fine Frenchmen and made me laugh not once, not twice, but many, many times when he graced the stage with his presence.
Don’t miss your chance to see SMT’s fantastic production of “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” at the Scarborough Village Theatre, 3600 Kingston Road East, Scarborough. Visit http://www.TheatreScarborough.com or call 416-267-9292 for tickets to this wonderful show!
Photos by Foreshots Photography