Skip to content

Elly on the Arts: Examining Mary Poppins, post-show

"Well, here we are in our post-Mary Poppins slump. It was “practically perfect”, wasn’t it?"

Well, here we are in our post-Mary Poppins slump. It was “practically perfect”, wasn’t it?

Kat Trumbley was so amazingly good that we are willing to break our own rule regarding reviews. She was perfectly (not to overuse the term completely) cast. Her voice was brilliant and clear and her spoken diction was beautiful. Her English accent was wonderful too, though she was not alone in that, as her co-stars Alain Lachapelle as George Banks, Kim Jones as Winnifred Banks and Chad Plamondon as Bert nailed the accent too. Trumbley lives for musical theatre (but not on it, as that would mean she had to live in a big city) and it showed. This musical needs a triple threat - that is, someone who can act, sing and dance, to embody the magic that is Mary Poppins. Trumbley managed to meet those demands in spades. Yes, indeed - practically perfect and plenty good enough for us to give it a standing ovation.

Plamondon was a sweet Bert and must be applauded for taking on such a challenging role so early in his “career” in musical theatre. He should certainly keep on working with the theatrical endeavours available in our little island of culture in the north of Manitoba. More experience will turn him into another star in our remarkable pantheon.

Alain Lachapelle and Kim Jones rather stole the show for us. George made the transition from burgeoning curmudgeon to loving father and husband seamless and very emotional and Winnifred moved from a rather shy but loving mum into a force to be reckoned with who could and would do whatever needed to be done to support and protect her family, including parenting her children herself. Jones's voice is also extraordinary and never more so than when singing “Being Mrs. Banks”, an incredibly lovely piece that brought on the waterworks for this (not so) tough reviewer. Lachapelle’s vocal talents have been hidden under a bushel a bit, as he acquitted himself very well.

Angela Ishaka and Penny Grove must be singled out for their charming performances in a variety of roles. Ishaka’s Mrs. Brill was so very protective of the “heirloooommm” until she wasn’t and her comic timing was impeccable throughout her roles. She has a delightful voice and immersed herself in her roles throughout. Grove is always a delight to see onstage and always seems to give 110 per cent to every role. This was no different, though she had to create characters for three different personas as well as sing and dance her way through several very difficult dance pieces. Her singing voice is remarkable and though we all know she prefers to sing tenor, her Miss Andrews had some incredible notes in there that Grove hit with aplomb.

Lana Leclerc as the policeman, Pandora Furniss as the bird woman and the four children who played Jane and Michael - Thomas Muldoon, Kaleb Olson, Carrera Goring-Pickering and Bridget Wendlandt also deserve to be singled out as well for their acting, singing and dancing prowess (yes, we did see it twice so saw both pairs of children perform.) It is impossible to choose a pair of kids because they had their individual talents on display as well as some real teamwork with each other. Thomas displayed fantastic comic timing and Kaleb managed to impart a significant air of mischief in his acting. Carrera has a lovely voice, important in a musical theatre production one might say, while Bridget was very physical and cast quite a presence on the stage. They were beautiful and so important to the story. We hope to see them again.

All of the actors who had speaking roles were delightful and brought drama, comedy and commitment to the stage. The ensemble was supportive and we know they worked their collective tails off learning the dances (including the one sleeping the sleep of the dead beside us at this moment). The production team ought to be proud of what they accomplished with this band of amateur performers. It was an amazing production.

push icon
Be the first to read breaking stories. Enable push notifications on your device. Disable anytime.
No thanks