Medea Redux | City | Halifax, Nova Scotia | THE COAST

"It's interesting how things work out", says a pretty-in- pink young woman seated at a plain basic table; a glass of water near her right hand ; a piece of paper and pen before her. No kidding. In a beautifully, emotionally nuanced performance, actor Mary Fay Coady brings to stunning life American fimmaker and playwright Neil LaBute's reworking of Euripedes' classic story of "jealousy and revenge of a woman betrayed by her husband" who dumps her and their two children to free himself up to marry a woman he figures ideal to uplift him romantically and in societal prestige. Wounded to her soul, the spurned woman exacts brutal revenge, poisoning her husband's intended and, for a capper, murdering the estranged couple's two children. LaBute, known for being "an unforgiving judge of the ugliest side of human nature" resets Medea in the Present. And uses the all-too-familiar story of an affair between a junior high teacher and a naive 13-year old girl to mirror Euripedes' seminal tragedy. What makes Medea Redux so compelling and riveting at this year's Fringe can be pinned on Mary Fay Coady. She skillfully depicts a 13-year old's dreamy expectation of a kiss - " a man's kiss that meant something". And the special excitement of being singled out by someone smart, atrractive and worldly-sophisticated. Older, worn-down, drained, recounting her feelings of betrayal, Coady's body language speaks as powerfully as the bitter words she chokes out. On the strength of Coady's confessional performance, Medea Redux deserves Fringe Hit status.

Showtime at the Bud Stop Theatre: Sat Sept 6 2:45 45 minutes $5.00

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