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THE NORWEGIANS presented by Clifton Players through Nov. 1. Click here for more information on the production. I attended the opening Thursday performance.
On paper, THE NORWEGIANS looks like a winner. A goofy premise with a solid cast of four. Unfortunately for me, it was paper in the form of the script that derailed the show.
I found the script to be uneven at best. Digging around on the internet, I discovered that this 90-minute show began its life as a ten-minute play and the stretch marks show. It seemed to rely heavily on gimmicks as opposed to strong story telling.
A problem for me was the pacing. While I understand the deliberate, measured speech of Tor (Sean Dillon), his delivery was so consistently slow that it offset any momentum built by the other actors. The simple scene changes between flashback and present day seemed a bit over-thought and slow.
The interactions between the characters seemed flat. For example, the barbs being traded between Tor and his half-Norwegian muscle (Michael Bath) didn’t seem to have much of an impact on their relationship. In the bar scenes with Betty (Carol Brammer) and Olive (Miranda McGee), they never became “funny to watch drunk.” With the final scene essentially being on a countdown, it failed to build to any sort of climax, there was no sense of urgency to it.
Overall a very uneven show that for me, struggled to be both dark and a comedy.
My rating 3.75 out of 5
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