SMUS Says Goodbye to Goodnight Desdemona

Last Saturday was the final performance of the smash play Goodnight Desdemona (Good Morning Juliet). Over four nights, the cast and crew put on four equally stellar performances of the award-winning play for students, staff and family. The theatre group earned a couple of standing ovations and much praise for their acting and production skills.

“Ann-Marie MacDonald’s brilliant play made audiences laugh and think and wonder at the power of the unconscious mind,” says staff director Jennifer Fraser.

Liz Guilbault played the part of the neurotic Constance Ledbelly perfectly, complete with shuffling feet and an anxious expression. As Constance, the timid assistant English professor, explores Shakespeare’s Othello and Romeo and Juliet, she meets a cast of compelling characters (and fabulous actors). Desdemona, a war-loving and jealous wife, was played brilliantly by a spirited Courtney Mahrt. Her husband, played by Josh Evans, was transformed into a much more likeable and romantic Moor.

In the second half, Romeo and Juliet took to the stage, with Gillian Harper playing a fatalistic and fickle version of the young bride. William Jevne and Jake McCloskey rotated the role of Romeo and both captured the youth and confusion of the character. Jayne Hammond and Jasmine Yan both shared the role Tybalt, and were equally comical and believable as the sword-loving and liquor-swilling man. Morgan Pudwell was compelling throughout, though her role was mostly silent.

The actors weren’t the only ones creating a hilarious and witty illusion. A simple set very well-done, accompanied by colourful costumes and expert lighting and scene-switching gave the whole production a professional feel.

“Audience members repeatedly said that they forgot they were watching an amateur show,” says Mrs. Fraser. “The students’ hard work on stage and behind the scenes really paid off.”

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