Laughs, lust, beekeeping and occasional turkey husbandry – The Birds and the Bees delivers that and more.
The romantic comedy that had Vancouver audiences in fits of laughter is poised to captivate in Courtenay on Friday, November 10. The Sid Williams Theatre Society is excited to present this Arts Club Theatre Company production as part of their Blue Circle Series.
Set against the lively backdrop of Gail's bee farm, the play unfolds in adjoining bedrooms. The arrival of her daughter Sarah, grappling with a failing marriage, adds a twist to Gail's newfound relationship with the neighbour Earl. Throw in a young grad student with an interest in bees – and Sarah – and things get complicated.
With comedic elements drawing on the familiar terrain of a bedroom farce, director Lauren Taylor says what sets the play apart is the relatable situations it portrays.
“The characters are seen through the comedy lens, but they are very human – warts and all! They are innocent and openhearted. We see their foibles and follies on full display. They all go through a very big journey of reversal from isolation to community and togetherness by the end.”
She also notes that the play takes a light-hearted look at what gets in the way of people finding freedom of expression and connection with each other. “We all have our things that stop us from moving forward to where we want to be in life, and sometimes it takes a special other person to help get us unstuck.”
While the play touches on deep themes, Taylor reassures that the tempo stays brisk and story elements buoyant due to the well-crafted narrative.
“The comedy is written into the pace and the punctuation. Mark Crawford is one of Canada’s most produced playwrights, and he is an actor as well…. He just knows how to write characters that seem recognizable – I think everyone knows a Gail or Earl in their lives.”
Additionally, she credits actors Nancy Kerr, Gerry Mackay, Agnes Tong and Riley Hardwick with keeping the pace, verbally and physically.
“[They] all have excellent comic timing…have a ton of theatre and film and tv experience between them and are spectacularly talented,” says Taylor. “The production is very physical. They are all tired by the end of it!”
Both actors and production crew are eager to hit the road and share their efforts with Island audiences.
“This is the first tour since 2020, and we are all so proud to be part of bringing theatre and stories back to the folks of BC.”
After all, she notes, the aim of the Arts Club Theatre Company is to share local stories with local audiences, bringing passionate theatre to life.
“Touring places like Courtenay is incredibly valuable because we do want to tell stories and experience community…. [It’s] hugely satisfying and big learning for us because audiences don’t lie. And they are so very, very generous when we make the effort to come to them.”
Don't miss this heartwarming testament to theatre’s power to unite and uplift. Due to adult content and a moment of partial nudity, the recommended age is 16+.