Possible Words

Director Daniel Brooks, long associated with the fringe edges of Toronto's theater, is a perfect choice for John Mighton's "Possible Worlds," filling gaps in an economical narrative and jibing with the playwright's scientific radicalism. With writing that is deceptively light and comic, the play involves a gruesome string of murders in which the victims' brains are removed. Through a series of short, clipped scenes, Mighton takes on predetermined notions of time, dimension and scientific morality.

With:
Cast: Randy Hughson (George), Lisa Ryder (Joyce), Jim Warren (Berkley), Jamie Williams (Williams), Chris Earle (Penfield).

The play could be a disaster in the hands of a director who ignores the fine balance between story and theory, but is delicately handled by Brooks, who concentrates on the central character of a murder victim (Randy Hughson). Able to exist in several dimensions at once, the doomed man replays different relationships with the same woman (Lisa Ryder as Joyce) over and over, remembering every detail of all his concurrent lives while she is firmly rooted in the here and now.

Brooks brings a fully realized vision to his work while respecting the material, the black set slashed with geometric washes of hot white light. A soundscape (by Richard Feren) enhances the many blackouts.

Despite the balance between substance and style, however, there are moments that suggest the play’s themes could be more satisfyingly fleshed out.

Possible Words

Opened Sept. 24, 1997, at Theatre Passe Muraille Backspace. Reviewed Sept. 25; 65 seats; C$24 ($17) top.

Production: TORONTO A Theatre Passe Muraille presentation of a play in one act by John Mighton. Directed by Daniel Brooks. Set, Julie Fox.

Creative: Costumes, Heather MacCrimmon, Michelle Smith; lighting, Andrea Lundy; sound, Richard Feren. Running time: 75 MIN.

Cast: Cast: Randy Hughson (George), Lisa Ryder (Joyce), Jim Warren (Berkley), Jamie Williams (Williams), Chris Earle (Penfield).

More Legit

  • Allelujah! review

    London Theater Review: 'Allelujah!' by Alan Bennett

    The play could be a disaster in the hands of a director who ignores the fine balance between story and theory, but is delicately handled by Brooks, who concentrates on the central character of a murder victim (Randy Hughson). Able to exist in several dimensions at once, the doomed man replays different relationships with the […]

  • A Monster Calls review

    London Theater Review: 'A Monster Calls'

    The play could be a disaster in the hands of a director who ignores the fine balance between story and theory, but is delicately handled by Brooks, who concentrates on the central character of a murder victim (Randy Hughson). Able to exist in several dimensions at once, the doomed man replays different relationships with the […]

  • Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

    'Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants' Stage Musical in the Works

    The play could be a disaster in the hands of a director who ignores the fine balance between story and theory, but is delicately handled by Brooks, who concentrates on the central character of a murder victim (Randy Hughson). Able to exist in several dimensions at once, the doomed man replays different relationships with the […]

  • Joe Morton

    Joe Morton, Daphne Rubin-Vega Among Rebel Verses Guest Performers (EXCLUSIVE)

    The play could be a disaster in the hands of a director who ignores the fine balance between story and theory, but is delicately handled by Brooks, who concentrates on the central character of a murder victim (Randy Hughson). Able to exist in several dimensions at once, the doomed man replays different relationships with the […]

  • The Lehman Trilogy review

    London Theater Review: 'The Lehman Trilogy,' Directed by Sam Mendes

    The play could be a disaster in the hands of a director who ignores the fine balance between story and theory, but is delicately handled by Brooks, who concentrates on the central character of a murder victim (Randy Hughson). Able to exist in several dimensions at once, the doomed man replays different relationships with the […]

  • elizabeth perkins First Time in Variety

    Elizabeth Perkins on Her Early Film, Stage Roles

    The play could be a disaster in the hands of a director who ignores the fine balance between story and theory, but is delicately handled by Brooks, who concentrates on the central character of a murder victim (Randy Hughson). Able to exist in several dimensions at once, the doomed man replays different relationships with the […]

  • 'Mary Page Marlowe' Review: Tatiana Maslany

    Off Broadway Review: 'Mary Page Marlowe'

    The play could be a disaster in the hands of a director who ignores the fine balance between story and theory, but is delicately handled by Brooks, who concentrates on the central character of a murder victim (Randy Hughson). Able to exist in several dimensions at once, the doomed man replays different relationships with the […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content