The Carousel

Megan Follows directs Allegra Fulton in a swirling solo performance

Presented by Nightwood Theatre
Written by Jennifer Tremblay
Directed by Megan Follows
Starring Allegra Fulton

Allegra Fulton in The Carousel. Photo by John Lauener.

Veteran Canadian actress Megan Follows’ directorial debut for Nightwood Theatre, The Carousel, takes audiences on a whirlwind emotional journey through the inner life of an unnamed woman (Allegra Fulton) as she drives along the north shore of Quebec to face the imminent death of her mother.

At the heart of Jennifer Tremblay’s poetic sequel to The List lies the question of female identity, and specifically the struggle to forge an independent sense of self despite an overwhelming tendency for women’s most basic rolesof mother and daughterto define them in the eyes of the outside world and in their own. Tremblay’s originally French script is layered and poetic, but so dense that the audience is left with a sense they are missing somethingyou quickly get the feeling that to do its many layers justice, you should probably be poring over the script in an armchair at your own pace. That being said, there is no question Fulton is incredibly gifted, and as the sole actor on stage throughout, she deftly inhabits the diverse array of characters that coexist in the protagonist’s psyche, from her overbearing alcoholic grandfather, to her mother as a playful young child. Thomas Ryder Payne and Kim Purtell should be commended for particularly excellent sound and lighting design which at times achieves a David Lynch-esque ambiance. 

All things considered, Follows delivers an overall feeling of inertia that echoes the spinning of a carousel, as the unnamed protagonist negotiates a mishmash of vivid memories in this impressive snapshot of one woman’s intense inner life.

The Carousel runs until March 30 at the Berkeley Street Theatre Downstairs (26 Berkeley Street). Visit for more information and to buy tickets.

Show Dates: 
Tue, 2014-03-11 - Sun, 2014-03-30
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