TROUSSEAU-TRUE NATURE by Marie-Josée Chartier, Katherine Duncanson, Fides Krucker, Linda Catlin Smith and Joanna McIntyre, directed by McIntyre, with Chartier, Duncanson, Krucker and Smith. Presented by the Urge Collective and Good Hair Day Productions at the Factory Mainspace (125 Bathurst). Runs to June 23, Thursday-Saturday 8 pm, matinee Sunday 2 pm. $20-$28, Sunday pwyc. 416-504-9971. Rating: NNN Rating: NNN
Trousseau-true nature, an interdisciplinary tale of fearful bridal fantasies set at a wedding reception, returns with a few party favours, though the wedding cake has grown crumbly in this reworked production.There's an intentional stream-of-consciousness quality to the show, in which the four performers -- Marie-Jose Chartier, Katherine Duncanson, Fides Krucker and Linda Catlin Smith -- are the Wedding Band, white-gowned performers at the reception who shift into their own dreamy takes on what a wedding can mean emotionally and intellectually.
There are some splendid moments from the strong cast, among them a striking episode when "bridal" becomes "bridle" and the cast morphs into a group of frisky fillies; Krucker's rich and vibrant mezzo songs, part melody and part howl; a three-part choral poem; Smith changing into an eerie bird in flight; and a wedding shivaree that turns into a bizarre tea party.
But something's been lost since the show's first incarnation a few years ago. Back then, the piece had a gossamer-thin, fluid flow, communicating a sense that we were drifting through the imaginations of the performers. Now, its organic nature largely evaporated, the work has the stop-and-start quality of set pieces put on view. Without that earlier sense of spontaneity, Trousseau-True Nature is a little like a coffee-table wedding album too often shown to company.