A Closer Walk With Jean Chretien - Politically Correct?

“Damn,” I thought to myself in the queue on Commercial Drive, smelling the melange of odours donated by several restaurants in mid-Drive business, various herbal vapours wafting past from patrons in need of their pneumonic medications, and a bit of bike smells, perfumery and human aromas. We had to line up on the curb to avoid blocking the strollers and becoming invalided by bikes on the sidewalk. I wished I knew more of One Crazy Frenchman’s first take on his alter ego. I wished I had seen it performed at that earlier Fringe.  

Havana is one of the Drive’s busiest long term dining spots. The theatre room behind the eatery is less well known. An exceptionally intimate room, it seemed perfect for a solo performance piece—plus musical guests—that needed some marching room. Oh, and a word about the seats. An extra cushion might be a good idea. The chairs are vintage, and quite beautiful. Unfortunately, my experience with public furniture of that period does not equate beauty with comfort. 

Jacque Lalonde, dapper as any Grit of the period being portrayed, sucked me right in with the accent and exaggerated political savvy that I recall from Chretien’s image. I wonder if I thought then that he was as good a Prime Minister as I now believe he was? 

I don’t believe the program lists music with this show. I’ve learned some new French expressions, and got an appreciation for the varied talent that Lalonde brings to this space. Oh, and also his passion for our country and the perilous times we are in. It’s patently political, but not very partisan, if trying to improve the state of the nation through any choice but the status quo can be considered non-partisan. There will be opinions. Come see what they are, Saturday, Sept. 12 at 1:45pm, or Sunday, Sept. 13th at 5:15pm, Monday Sept. 14th at 6pm, Wednesday Sept. 16th, 9:30pm, Friday Sept 18th at 6pm, or the final show on Saturday Sept. 19th at 9:15pm.

By Bruce M. Campbell