[ad_1]

With its latest creation, the One Yellow Rabbit ensemble proves it is definitely still in its prime.

Live Your Prime with Damien Frost is a laugh-out-loud comedy laced with biting, insightful wit and satire, and it features sterling performances from creators John Murrell, Denise Clarke, Andy Curtis and Blake Brooker.

Brooker doesn’t appear on stage, but his work as director is evident in the show’s sly, confident staging from the cast members changing the configuration of the three lounge chairs to the bravery of having the trio sing an entire weary version of Supertramp’s Dreamer to end the show. A less brazen director would have concluded a few bars of Dreamer would make the point, but not Brooker, who knows the joke keeps getting better the longer Murrell, Clarke and Curtis sing.

Live Your Prime with Damien Frost looks at the phenomenon of self-help gurus such as Tony Robbins, who has personally spun his motivational seminars and guidebooks into an empire that generates more than $6 billion in revenue per year.

Damien Frost is a little shark in comparison but a shark none the least. When he was a young man, Damien Frost (Murrell) wrote a book called Live Your Prime, explaining how important it is for people to take control of their lives. It was an instant success, which encouraged him to write six more life guides urging people to look inward for the solutions to all their ills.

Damien seems to have changed wives with the publication of each new book because he now travels with his fifth wife Darlene (Clarke), a Russian expatriate who turned up in his hotel room during one of his book tours and convinced him to sneak her out of the country. Darlene now runs the lucrative infomercial wing of the Damien Frost empire. Clarke is one of Calgary’s finest physical actors and she uses her entire body to bring Darlene to vibrant life. It’s a joy to watch Clarke slither into a chair or rise regally from one, simply oozing self-importance.

Also on board, but in a much lesser capacity, is Damien Junior (Curtis) or D2 as Darlene calls him. He is Damien’s emotionally estranged son from his first marriage. With his own greying beard, Curtis looks as if he could be Murrell’s son and, although he proclaims to hate his father, Curtis makes it clear Damien Jr. wants and needs the closeness the guru shares with his followers but denies his only son.

As Damien Sr., Murrell channels his inner evangelist, sliding effortlessly from soft, soothing tones to emotionally charged missives. Hidden behind dark glasses and a half smile, Murrell’s Damien is a man who has learned to harness his ego, especially for public consumption, but he shows glimpses of it when dealing with his son.

We meet the trio in the midst of a documentary being filmed on Damien’s life and work. Eventually, the script allows us to see the private side of these three people and it’s most telling.

One Yellow Rabbit’s Live Your Prime with Damien Frost is surprising, entertaining, enlightening and uplifting, making it an impressive little package and one which I’m certain will not be forgotten in the nominations for the 2019 Betty Mitchell Awards.

It runs as part of the One Yellow Rabbit High Performance Rodeo in the Arts Commons’ Big Secret Theatre daily from Jan. 15-19 at 7:30 p.m. There is a 3 p.m. matinee on Jan. 13.

 

LIVE YOUR PRIME WITH DAMIEN FROST

Created by The One Yellow Rabbit Ensemble

Directed by Blake Brooker

At the Big Secret Theatre until Jan. 19

FOUR STARS

[ad_2]

Source link