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Fringe Review: Three to Leave

By Brian Carroll on June 17, 2017




Three to Leave
by Sofie Milito, Sadie Laflamme-Snow, Aurel Pressat & Franco Pang
Floral Theatre

46 min / Drama / PG

Aurel (Aurel Pressat), Sadie (Sadie Laflamme-Snow) and Sofie (Sofie Milito) were best friends in middle school. They had a falling out when Sofie chickened out of an a cappella trio premiere with only a week’s notice. This betrayal eventually soured their friendship.

Prior to that incident, they hung out together, lunched together, empathized, and acted in solidarity. Sadie and Sofie shared secrets. “We used to be inseparable,” the three declare in unison. But now, “We have nothing in common.”

Now it’s time to test their independence and leave home. Sadie is moving to study in Toronto. She runs into Sofie and they agree to be roommates. What Sadie doesn’t know is that Sofie has no plan to go to school. She’s just going to run away from home.

The three actors do much right. This should be no surprise as they are alumni of Jordan Tannahill’s Concord Floral which played the NAC in April 2016. They project well, establish presence, command the Arts Court Theatre space. Their interactions are believable. They portray age appropriate emotions without being over the top. Their ensemble work is tight. There’s a clever trilingual scene that is artfully done and moves the plot forward.

A three-hander creates instability and tension (for example, Sartre’s No Exit, or Pinter’s Betrayal), as paired alliances rise and crumble. The tension approaches a climax and then a denouement provides a resolution. In storytelling, this is called the arc: a beginning, a middle and an end. Two out of three elements is considered to be an anecdote, or a set of anecdotes, not a story.

The script (co-written with producer Franco Pang) has promise, but I found it incomplete. The plot was proceeding well. The back story was established in a set of reveals that coalesced in a timely manner. The tension between the characters was building organically, and at a steady pace.

At the height of tension, the three protagonists sat down before a video projection of their three soliloquies. The three recordings bore no relationship to each other that I could discern. Nor did they seem related thematically to anything that has gone before. Static inertia replaced dynamic tension which dissipated into the electronic ether.

Did the writers deliberately choose not to resolve the tension they had so carefully crafted? Or were they unable to create an ending?

From this performance, I can’t answer that question.

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