Now almost 20 years old, David Mamet’s script has not lost the power to shock.
Ken Rudderham and Rhea Fedorchuk have excellent chemistry as college professor John and his student, Carol.
Watch their eye contact and body language as the story unfolds. The seductive, sinister descent into confusion and chaos is handled well by director Ray Strachan, with the possible exception of having Carol become aggressive immediately at the start of the second act, giving the game away somewhat early.
A few flubs of an otherwise excellent production were the only real quibbles (Rudderham mistakenly says the word "honey" instead of "baby," which is needed for the setup of a crucial line, and the ending is diminished when Fedorchuk doesn’t clearly enunciate Carol’s final words).
— Janice Sawka
From the official Fringe Festival guide:
"There can be no tougher or more unflinching play than Oleanna" – Harold Pinter
A meeting between a teacher and a student becomes a devastating lesson of status warfare, and what happens when language fails us.
Mamet's style of writing uses language, gender and power to create an unflinching exploration of the social institution of academia.
Featuring: Rhea Fedorchuk & Ken Rudderham
PTE Colin Jackson Studio (Venue 17), to July 24
Discount Tickets: $8 for Students, Equity & Fringe perfs
Under 14 not admitted.