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Theater company presented enjoyable show

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Posted: Sunday, July 24, 2005 10:00 pm

Recently, under the oaks at Jessie's Grove Winery, we were treated to a musical farce in the original intent of the phrase.

"A Pirate's Tale" is a lighthearted spoof of pirate movies and musicals. There were smoking cannons, sword fights, double-crossing treachery and enough swash-bucklers to take Tortuga by storm.

In fact, before the play there was a pirate carnival where we could lay down coins for games of chance and skill as if we were visiting Tortuga in the heyday of the Spanish Main.

This production gave sly homage to the caricatures and stereotypes of recent and past pirate renditions.

Treasure Island's spy in the apple barrel was easily eclipsed by "Laugh-in" style double trap doors. And reminiscent of Johnny Depp's Cap'n Sparrow, we laughed along with the exploits of a mascara wearing pirate captain beset by ghosts and a run-away heiress seeking excitement.

Aboard was a French chef pirate who surely had Lafitte spinning in his grave, and a scullery maid as nutty as Stevenson's Ben Gunn. Somehow the crew included (ja, sure) Swedish girls, a self-centered British admiralty officer, and even that comical Japanese swordsman of dubious virtue surely borrowed from "The Seven Samurai."

Someone suggested this was "Monty Python Meets Pirates of the Caribbean," but where the Python crew always veered off into silliness, this crew of local youngsters and actors stayed exuberant and in character.

Changing Faces Theater Company is presenting an enjoyable show, and showcasing the talent of a local playwright and some budding young actors.

To all involved, I say "Aye matey," 'twas a good evening's entertainment and good grub too!

Jim Fox

Lodi

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