My Funny Valentine has a small set and a small cast, but a big story.
My Funny Valentine follows several stories of the on-looking individuals during the homophobic and horrific murder of Lawrence King. On February 12th, 2008 Lawrence was murdered in school at the age of 15 by his classmate from two gun-shots to the back of the head, making 2018 the 10 year mark.
Vancouver playwright Dave Devreau constructed a beautiful play made up of many different perspectives. Presented as a series of monologues exploring each character’s relationship to the crime, an unnamed character known only as the Collector embodies seven people on the fringes of the murder as he struggles to make sense of a gruesome act provoked by a seemingly innocent gesture.
The play comments strongly on our beliefs and practices as people, demonstrating society’s continuously contrasting views on queer rights.
As a one-person show, Conor Wylie had the challenge of taking on a group of vastly different characters. Wylie, who is also a Vancouver-based theatre artist, did a fabulous job of differentiating each individual in a thoughtful, precise way. He was sometimes too melodramatic, allowing the drama of the content to take over. Despair is understandable in such a horrific situation, but subtlety is always valuable on stage.
Still, Wylie was committed to each role, driving the excitement in the audience and making everyone wonder what would come next.
Overall the production was very truthful, important and relevant. My Funny Valentine runs from February 7-18 at The Dance Centre on Davie St. Tickets can be found here.
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