Taking Sibling Rivalry to a New Level
Reviewed by Mary Alderson
It’s a scenario that many of us have been through: moving Mom and Dad into a nursing home, and dividing up the spoils left behind in the family home. It’s a sad and difficult task, made worse if Mom is refusing to make the move into long term care. That’s the premise of Meet My Sister, now on stage at the Globus Theatre in the Lakeview Arts Barn.
Blanche is at Mom’s house, apparently the home in which she grew up. She is packing boxes and setting them out on the porch, all the while calling to her mother and begging her to come out. Mom is holed up in the bedroom, door locked, refusing to be part of the packing up and making it clear she does not want to move. But Mom’s mind seems to wander, too. We learn from Blanche that she is struggling with dementia. Finally, Blanche’s sister, Stella, arrives from BC, annoyed that Blanche didn’t pick her up at the airport.
Very soon it is plain to see that the two sisters are complete opposites. Blanche is the common sense sister, while Stella is the earth-loving hippie bohemian who grows lavender on the farm. The two disagree on what is best for Mom.
Then Sly shows up. He is Blanche’s high school crush, and seems to be a bit of a loser, delivering wine orders from the liquor store. But in act two, everything changes and we learn much more about Sly. The daughters learn much more about Mom, and a new solution is found. That’s all I can say for fear of spoiling the plot.
All three actors perfectly give the characters their own nuances. Ramona Milano as Blanche shows us all the frustration of the daughter who ends up doing all the work because she lives closest to Mom. Her “let’s just get it done” attitude is evident in all she does. Anna Silvija Broks is delightful as Stella in her long tie-dyed dress, and provides some of the laughs with her ditzy responses. Dave Pearce as Sly has the opportunity to show us two sides of this character and does it very well.
My only concern is with the telling of the story. The first act seems a little long and repetitive. Too much time is spent on the exposition or background of the sisters without moving the plot forward. Then in the second act new information comes to light which suddenly changes everything and it rapidly comes to a conclusion. Perhaps some foreshadowing might be in order. As this was the opening night and the premier of a brand new Canadian play, perhaps it will be evened out in the future. It is a good story, and one that we are hearing more often as households examine their family trees.
The set is simple but well done. All action takes place on Mom’s front porch, featuring a cozy yellow-sided house, with the front door and a bedroom window.
Finally, there is a mystery tucked inside this comedy – who played the role of the mother? We heard her replies from behind the curtain in the open window, but no one came out for the final bow.
As usual, the very popular Globus dinner was served before the show, and everything was delicious. While the dinners are limited and have sold out for this production, tickets for the play are still available.
Meet My Sister continues at the Globus Theatre, Lakeview Arts Barn near Bobcaygeon, until July 2. Tickets are available by calling the Box Office at 705-738-2037 or 1-800-304-7897 or visit https://www.lakeviewartsbarn.com/globus-current-season
Photo: Ramona Milano as Blanche, Anna Salvija Broks as Stella, and Dave Pearce as Sly. Photo by Rebecca Anne Bloom. .
Meet My Sister
By Bonnie Green
Directed by James Barrett
Performed by Anna Silvija Broks, Ramona Milano, Dave Pearce.
Globus Theatre at the Lakeview Arts Barn, Bobcaygeon
June 22 to July 2, 2022
Reviewed by Mary Alderson