The less acrobatic it is, the better it gets.

Fringe storyteller Martin Dockery’s trademark style can be fun. He’s got a raspy, enthusiastic voice and he flaps around so much that sometimes it looks like he’s trying to take off. When he’s building a narrative, Dockery takes a similar delight in embellishment: he loves to twist around in tangents and then relish your surprise when he finally gets to the point.

That can be great as far as it goes, but it goes too far in Delirium. This collection of stories takes too long to land.

I found little of consequence in Dockery’s first tale, which is about proposing to his wife Vanessa. (What’s at stake? And why does it take so long?) The second story, which unfolds at Burning Man, doesn’t find itself until it trips over the theme of death—about 20 minutes into the evening. Then, all at once, it’s gorgeous. So is the third tale, which starts off being about monarch butterflies. By the end of that one, I was sucking back sobs. And Dockery was standing still.

Remaining performances at the Waterfront Theatre on September 8 (4:30 p.m.), 9 (12:30 p.m.), 10 (5 p.m.), 13 (8:45 p.m.), and 15 (8:15 p.m.)  > Colin Thomas 



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About Colin Thomas

Colin Thomas is a Vancouver-based editor, an award-winning playwright, and an established theatre critic. Colin helps writers unlock the full potential of their novels, short stories, screenplays, and children's books.

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