Peter Fechter: 59 Minutes
FOUR STARS | Wry humour, difficult truths and unexpected joy are masterfully juggled
Company: Theatre by the River, Winnipeg
Genre: Play — Drama
Venue: 27 — The Rocker
There is a reason why the Cold War endures in film, novels and drama: its arbitrary divisions are almost ready-made for metaphor.
The Berlin Wall looms large in this gem of a play, separating a teenager from the West, his future, and a knowledge of his own desires. It's more than a period piece — Peter Fechter: 59 Minutes is full of wry humour, difficult truths and unexpected joy, masterfully juggled by solo actor Kevin P. Gabel.
It is a tribute to Theatre by the River that a historical piece about death so eloquently speaks to life.- Shawna Dempsey
As his life drains away — not a spoiler, that's in the Fringe program — Peter's hearing is heightened: a baby bird on a telephone pole pecks it way free from the shell, a grandmother's knitting needles click on an airplane overhead and, most poignantly, his mother's gold watch ticks the final seconds of his life on another woman's bedside table.
It is a tribute to Theatre by the River that a historical piece about death so eloquently speaks to life.