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  • Oliver Boon

Boeing Boeing: Odd Couple meets Friends

Starring: Oscar Fleming, Matt Torczon, Katrine Fenger, Emilie Owen, Celine Rosalie Zoppe, Theresa Philomena

Director: Betty Karlen
Writer: Marc Camoletti
Producers: Celine Rosalie Zoppe, Theresa Philomena
German Efficiency Productions
The Complex Theatre

The Odd Couple: One is a cocky playboy, the other is a chipper neurotic. When things go belly up they must work together to keep the ruse going. A 60s comedy that is dated in some ways but timeless in hilarity.

Friends: Robert (Matt Torzcon) at times seemed to be channeling Chandler Bing in all the right ways. There's also something very lighthearted about the show even when the stakes are very high.

Adapted from the 1960's French farce by Marc Camoletti, Boeing Boeing centers around a seemingly improbable premise of a womanizing Frenchman by the name of Bernard attempting to keep three engagements going with three different air stewardesses by systematically working around the flight schedules so they never bump into each other because Bernard is always one step ahead. When Bernard's friend from Wisconsin Robert comes to visit, he is amazed and in wonder of how Bernard's managed to keep it up for so long. But when flights are changed and schedules collide, hilarity ensues and the two men spend the night trying to keep the stewardesses from meeting each other.

The three engaged stewardesses really thrive in their different cultural personalities. Emilie Owen, as the brash new-yorker, had such conviction, eating waffles drenched in ketchup. Celine Rosalie Zoppe as Gabriella, gave a resounding performance as the fiery Italian every show should have. Theresa Philomena, playing Gretchen, brough lot of nuance in her role as the strong yet sensitive German in hilarious fashion.

Katrine Fenger plays the french maid with a severity that works best as Bernard's desperation grows.

Oscar Fleming plays Bernard with a pompousness that is simply infectious and when his schemes catch up with him he loses all of his swagger and it is a delight to the audience. As I said before, Matt Torczon as Robert was delightful playing the bright-eyed innocent Robert. My favorite moments was when Robert explains his frustrations to Bernard of the lengths he was going through to avert the situation they were in, only for his pleas to fall on deaf ears. Seeing Matt enter the tiny stage for the first time immediately brings as laugh just for the fact that he is so towering compared to the rest of the set!

Hats off to the director Betty Karlen for directing these actors to maneuver through the smallest of sets, it emphasized the farce in all the best ways. It was only near the beginning when I was concerned with the space as there were so many cups and plates on the coffee table and so much movement happening around it, I'm relieved nothing was knocked. If anything, it made it more lively!

If you're looking for a classic comedy performed by an energetic and fresh cast, go see this show!

The show runs every Friday, Saturday, Sunday from July 19th till August 4th at the Complex Theatre.

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