Review: Statistics by Ladyville Productions
Statistics is simply pitch perfect, and brilliantly composed.
SHOW DATE: Wednesday July 6th 9:45PM
ADA SLAIGHT HALL
Review By: Armon Ghaeinizadeh
“Work harder, be smarter, and keep your lips pursed.” This show left me with a newfound faith in the skills of Canadian musical theatre creators. Statistics explores the experiences of women in academia and particularly in life sciences, while exploring the pressures to work hard, prove yourself, and the rampant misogyny of the 1950’s that unfortunately lingers and persists today. Musically, this production was pitch perfect. Shreya Jha has masterfully composed a beautiful score with the perfect balance of text to music. The music was only further enhanced by an incredible 6-piece band that comprised most of the set of the production.
Rose’s hero is Rosalind Franklin, an English chemist and crystallographer whose work led to the discovery of the structure of DNA and died from ovarian Cancer. Both Maddie Sekulin and Rachel Mundy are incredibly talented performers that are exciting to watch, musically stunning, and the pressure they felt to succeed was tangible. As a current student, I felt a fire re-lit within me to continue to be the change I wanted to see when I was in theatre school. Academia, and the Arts are and have been historically male and white centered, and this show’s desire for female representation and the fight for credit where credit is due was clear. Speaking of representation, I was disappointed by the lack of diversity among the cast. It would have been nice to see this show about the marginalization of women in science explore more of the disproportionate marginalization of women of colour as this felt like a missed opportunity.
Although the score and text were on point, acknowledging that I saw their first opening run of the show in the space, there were multiple technical sound and lighting issues, the most predominant being of mics not properly secured to people’s faces. I am sure these issues will be sorted out, and the only other noticeable qualm I had with the show, was that the cast consistently could not find their light which resulted in disappointment as we could often not see their faces.
Overall, I loved the show, it was a musical treat, and one of the best composed original musicals I have heard in years.
Armon Ghaeinizadeh (he/him) is a Toronto based Actor, Director, Choreographer, Producer, Playwright and now... Theatre Critic? A UofT Drama Centre graduate, Armon is the Artistic Director of New Story Productions, registered with the Playwrights Guild of Canada, and most recently has performed with Canadian Stage, Roseneath Theatre, Globus Theatre, Nowadays Theatre, TYT, Next Stage 2020, has been working with the Fringe since 2015, and is thrilled to be a New Young Reviewer!