Friday, October 9, 2015

Review of Miss Buncle's Book at Lifeline Theatre

Once upon a time I went to a show and it was called Miss Buncle's Book. It was based on the book by D. E. Stevenson and adapted by Christina Calvit. It was directed by Dorothy Milne. It was about this woman named Miss Buncle (Jenifer Tyler) who lived in a small town in England and she writes a novel about the people who live in that small place. But then the novel gets published and people start reading it and realize it is all about them. And they decide they have to find out who wrote the book so they can get revenge. But the book actually helps some people to realize that life is too short to not tell people how you feel about them, that if your husband is cruel you should just leave him, and that Egypt is a nicer place than you thought. This play is about love, adventure, and self-confidence. I thought this was an amazing, hilarious show. I laughed so much. I had so much fun at it. I thought it was a great story with great actors. There might be some spoilers in my review, but I think the show is fun even if you know some things that are going to happen.

Mrs. Featherstone Hogg (Katie McLean Hainsworth), Mrs. Carter (Katharine Hildreth) and Stephen Bulmer (Martel Manning) are all very upset about what has been revealed about them in Miss Buncle's Book. They went way too far a lot of the times. Mrs. Featherstone Hogg would invite everyone over for tea and scones and they would talk about what they should do to punish the writer of the book. Mrs. Featherstone Hogg thinks there should be a horsewhipping of the author, but of course they don't know who the author is yet, so they don't know who to horsewhip. I found it funny how defensive they got about themselves. Mrs. Carter kept saying she didn't wear a wig, but of course she did. And Stephen Bulmer said he wasn't horrible to his wife, but of course he was. I loved the bit where Mrs. Featherstone Hogg gave scones to everybody but the people who wanted them. I found that very funny.

I loved most of the love stories that were in it. Almost every person was either married or found love by the end of the play. Dorothea Bold (Tiffany Oglesby) and Colonel Weatherhead (Sean Sinitski) was the most amazing old-people love story. (Neither of the actors were old, but they did a good job making it seem like they were.) A funny thing about them is that when he proposed to her he said "I've always loved you" and did this romantic dip-and-kiss that I thought was hilarious and cute. He kept telling her not to read the book, which had inspired him to propose, so that she wouldn't think he had just done it because of that. I love how he'd stolen the book out of her bag. I also thought there might be a romance between Miss King (Elise Kauzlaric) and Angela Pretty (Oglesby). And I loved how they were inspired by the book to go on a trip as well. I loved how against the trip they both were until they actually went on the trip. I felt like Sally's (Kristina Loy) love story with the Reverend Ernest Hathaway (Chris Vizurraga) showed her not making very good choices because she told his fiancee Mrs. Greensleeves (Kauzlaric) that he was poor so that she, Sally, could be with him. But he was not really poor, he was just finding out what it was like to be poor for a little bit and had stashed away his money. I don't think he should have stayed with Mrs. Greensleeves, but he should have made that decision for himself.

Miss Buncle and Mr. Abbott had an awkward and cute relationship. I loved how during their first kiss she made it so awkward and amazing by like leaning in and getting nervous as it started to happen. But they loved each other's awkwardness so it was not awkward for them. Miss Buncle says she doesn't have any imagination, that she just observes things. But she did have imagination after all and I think Mr. Abbot helped her realize that and all the great things about herself and that she didn't need to be scared about her being discovered to be John Smith, the writer of the book. I loved how he proposed to her in an editor's note. You feel so much for these characters and you want them to be together from the beginning of the story. I thought that it was great how when people discover who John Smith was, she just walks past them so confidently wearing this fancy hat. I loved that, and I loved seeing this character learn so much.

People who would like this show are people who like author-editor love stories, scones, and horsewhipping authors. I think people should definitely definitely go see this show. It is funny and clever and I really enjoyed it.

Photos: Suzanne Plunkett

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