Moya O’Connell, Jonathon Young

Bernard (Jonathon Young), a successful architect living in 1960’s Paris, is in the enviable position of having three airline stewardesses to claim as his fiancée in Marc Camoletti’s Boeing-Boeing. The hilarious romp through the lives of the three women, a Parisian housekeeper (brilliantly executed by Vancouver favourite Nicola Lipman), a bachelor, and his old buddy from the States makes for a fine evening of laughs.

Boeing-Boeing is the most performed French play in the world, with the 2008 Broadway revival run receiving two Tony Awards.

Moya O’Connell, Jonathon Young
[Kimberley Sustad, Jonathon Young, Nicola Lipman]

The Arts Club held its media opening last night to a packed house. Set Designer Amir Ofek brings lots of white to the stage, recreating a typical bachelor pad, along with the requisite bar near the couch. Space-age silver pillows, groovy chairs, and other details lend themselves to a well-heeled architect’s apartment in the heart of the city of lights.

The three stewardesses — Gloria (Kimberley Sustad), Gabriella (Moya O’Connell), and Gretchen (Colleen Wheeler) — arrive separately during their scheduled stopovers from all points around the globe. Bernard thinks he’s got his time tables down pat, when all three suddenly experience situations beyond their control that lead them to enter the pad at the same time.

Jonathon Young, Andrew McNee
[Jonathon Young, Andrew McNee]

All the while, Robert (Andrew McNee) is trying to make sense of Bernard’s master plan, while making himself at home after his long flight from small-town America. He hasn’t seen Bernard in a couple of decades, and is shocked as Bernard’s ‘scene’ starts to unravel in front of his very eyes.

I enjoyed watching Nicola Lipman and Andrew Jonathon Young together on stage again after Electric Company’s All the Way Home, a 2012 production that garnered a Jessie Award for Outstanding Direction for Small Theatre (as well as Lipman’s award for Outstanding Actress in a Supporting Role).

Wheeler, Lipman
[Colleen Wheeler, Nicola Lipman]

Standout roles in this production include Nicola Lipman, Colleen Wheeler, Andrew McNee, and Jonathon Young. Each stewardess has a fiery personality to match their colourful airline uniforms (courtesy of Costume Designer Nancy Bryant); all contrast nicely against the all-white walls and furnishings.

Colleen Wheeler, Kimberley Sustad, Moya O’Connell
[Colleen Wheeler, Kimberley Sustad, Moya O’Connell]

Two hours (including intermission), and I still didn’t want the show to end. Get ready for a night of hilarity as Boeing-Boeing takes off nightly through February 24 at the Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage.

All photos by David Cooper.

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