An acerbic and occasionally funny performance by Winnipegger Theresa Thomson doesn’t rescue this pedantic exploration of the Virgin Mary’s exile from a religion she founded.
Novice playwright and first-time director Audra Lesosky has imagined a foul-mouthed, straight-talking Mary, who tells us the real story of Jesus, one masterminded by a desperate mother who created a god by conning the world into thinking her son rose from the dead. Now, Mary is stuck in the dusty corners of churches run by men, without any real power to respond to the millions who pray to her for help.
Trouble is, we covered a lot of this in The Da Vinci Code. And we’ve already heard most of the jokes about obscure Bible rules banning cotton blends and clean-shaven men. Even Thomson seems a little bored by the history lesson halfway through.
Breaking up Thomson’s monologue is a five-woman chorus that launches into hymn versions of Madonna hits every few minutes. After the first laugh, they’re just tedious. The singers aren’t strong enough, the arrangements aren’t interesting enough, the movements are stilted and it drags.
— Mary Agnes Welch