Snake Oil (Black Sheep Theatre)
Saskatoon Fringe Festival
Snake Oil is excellent. It is well-acted, well-written and well-directed (by Fringe veterans Jayson McDonald and Dave Dawson).
Zach Counsil and Hannah Gibson-Fraser suit their parts well. This is not a flawless piece of theatre, but it comes across as authentic (if a bit wordy). And so often at Fringe festivals, where even personal monologues are presented as scripted and somewhat lifeless, it is a treat to find a theatre piece where dialogue flows naturally and the characters are a perfect fit to the actors who portray them.
The combination of subtle humour, diverting cautionary tales involving shadow puppets (very popular this year, as they appear in several plays), and clever interplay between characters subtly ensnares the audience so that by the end (which is, as in most scripts by Jayson McDonald, suitably dark), we are firmly intrenched in the world of the play.
Ssssssnake Oil. I’ll take three.