Local playwright/activist Geoff Hughes was commissioned to write Unequal Harvest to draw attention to the global food crisis, and this well-intentioned 60-minute two-hander fulfils its instructional purpose, if not quite elevating itself into gripping theatre.
Hughes is at pains to make Unequal Harvest more than a lecture by having characters (played by himself and actress Kami Desilets), ranging from a Kenyan farmer to a Paraguayan activist, tell their stories in different ways — the taciturn Prairie farmer, for instance, unburdens himself to his father’s headstone — but with no dramatic arc, it’s still really more suited to a classroom than a stage.
The use of simple costumes (Hughes should invest in a safety pin for his African outfit) and generally well-done accents transforms the two into characters who relate the many ways big business, war and industrial concerns are tainting both our food supply and the people who supply it. Desilets in particular is adept at wresting the emotion from the mostly expository dialogue — her chipper food bank volunteer especially touches a nerve.
— Jill Wilson
From the official Fringe Festival guide:
Praise for Unequal Harvest
"Gripping and heartbreaking in equal measure, an urgent and compassionate call to understand the real lives and people behind the appalling statistic of a billion people going hungry" - Raj Patel, author of Stuffed and Starved
Featuring Kami Desilets and Geoff Hughes.
Rudolph Rocker Cultural Centre (Venue 19), to July 24
Discount Tickets: $8 for Students, Seniors, Kids (12 & under), with non-perishable food donation