Good Grief.

Good Grief.
Creative team: Rosina Gannon, Charlie Laidlaw & Greg Dyson. La Mama Courthouse Theatre. February 15 - February 27, 2011.

What's good about grief?

Usually we only miss something that we feel was worth having in the first place. In this memoir-on-stage, Rosina Gannon and Charlie Laidlaw share their memories of the mothers they lost — one to cancer and the other to a tumor.

The actors met in 1993 and connected because of their shared experience of loss. In the years since, they've shared many cups of tea sharing the joys and frustrations their mothers brought them and how they dealt with grief. The time spent over a cuppa provides the frame for this vivid performance that alternates between empty-your-lungs funny and onion-in-the-throat poignant.

Gannon and Laidlaw create the appearance of a real kitchen conversation. They pause, lost in thought, before picking up their tale or launching in a new direction. Silence is used effectively to create the sombre mood, just as apparently unintentional humor is used to lighten it.

If you've ever gone through this kind of grief, you'll leave the show sharing stories with your friends. Rather than being melancholy, the place is an emotional catalyst for the memories of why the person mattered to you.

Daniel G Taylor

Image: Charlie Laidlaw and Rosina Gannon in Good Grief.

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