Spring 2011: The Relephants get a pretty exciting phone call. The Vancouver Playhouse and the Vancouver International Fringe Festival want to team up to create opportunities for emerging artists by activating the Recital Hall in the basement of the Vancouver Playhouse through the Playhouse Fringe Award.
The Award was in the planning stages, and Relephant was chosen as the first company to participate. In 2013,Vvancouver audiences will get to experience Little Orange Man from SNAFU Dance Theatre (Victoria, BC) – the first winner of the Playhouse Fringe Award from the 2011 Vancouver International Fringe Festival.
The Recital Hall is not a well-known venue in Vancouver, and it’s about time that changed!
“We are pleased to participate in the concept of #Neverbedark by enlivening this Civic Theatre space and encouraging active community involvement.”
Relephant Theatre’s production of The Exquisite Hour will be featured in the Vancouver Playhouse’s 2011/2012 Season in the Recital Hall Series, after delighting sold-out audiences at the 2010 Vancouver International Fringe Festival and a subsequent holdover at the Jericho Arts Centre.
Sweet like lemonade but cut with the kick of bourbon, Stewart Lemoine’s The Exquisite Hour sees confirmed bachelor Zachary Teale’s world turned upside-down after a drink with Helen Darimont, a lovely (and mysterious) encyclopaedia saleswoman. Set on a summer evening in 1962, one lovely hour plays out in real time as the alluring Mrs. Darimont leads Zachary to question knowledge, conjecture, and the value of time.
Relephant Theatre is pleased as punch for the opportunity to bring this jewel of a show back to Vancouver audiences. Saw it at the Fringe? Come back and check it out as it’s reimagined in the 60’s era Recital Hall, complete with lemonade stand, and 60’s garden party vibe.
The Exquisite Hour marks Vancouver actor Julie McIsaac’s directorial debut. “I am so intrigued by both these characters,” says McIsaac. “They are intricately drawn and yet devilishly slippery to get ahold of. In moments, we feel that we know them intimately, and then, in a heartbeat, we’re questioning everything we’ve come to assume so far. It’s a deliciously fun world to delve into.”
The fun is clearly contagious – The Exquisite Hour sold out multiple performances and was a shortlisted for the Pick of the Fringe, Georgia Straight Critics’ Choice Award, and the Cultchivating the Fringe Award for the 2010 Vancouver Fringe Festival.
“Josue Laboucane is fantastically uptight and nerdy… Nevada Yates Robart plays the enthusiastic encyclopedia saleswoman, Mrs. Darimont, with such a balance poise and neuroses that we’re not surprised to discover more than we bargained for in her… a nod must be given to director Julie McIsaac as she provides a strong cohesiveness and momentum to the piece as a whole.” – Nathan Zeitner, sadmag.ca
“Lemoine has created a magical experience between two strangers… Josue Laboucane and Nevada Yates are superb… The chemistry between their characters is fabulous – from awkward moments, to playful interactions, their timing is just right, evoking laughter and feelings of empathy from the audience members throughout the entire show… director Julie McIsaac has manipulated the space well, and the set pieces literally become an obstacle course for Mr. Teale and Mrs. Deremont [sic] at times, adding comic value to the already amusing storyline.” – Keira Louis, plankmagazine.com
“Relephant Theatre’s production of Stewart Lemoine’s The Exquisite Hour was the loveliest way I could have spent an afternoon hour of my life… not only am I impressed by the production but I am very impressed by this new company… It seemed to me like every detail was thought of… you take all of this, and then you add into it wonderfully funny and sweet performances (directed by 20-something alumni Julie McIsaac) and yes, it is very impressive, indeed. I won’t tell you what happens but let’s just say that at the end of this exquisite hour there were a lot of “awwww’s” and cooing sounds going on in the audience.” –Sabrina Evertt, twentysomethingtheatre.blogspot.com