Saturday, July 9, 2011

A comedic take on Harry and Bess

Aside from appearances on The Simpsons and Family Guy, I can't recall anyone doing a purely comedic take on Houdini...until now. Houdini’s Last Escape is the Canadian Monster Theatre's latest "historical re-imagining." According to their website, it "features magic, spectacle, spirits, escapes, comedy and true love!"

Houdini’s Last Escape is written and directed by Ryan Gladstone. It features Christopher Bange as Houdini and Tara Travis "as his loving wife Bess." Illusion design and construction is by Christopher Bange with an original Score by Drew Jurecka.

Visit the Monster Theatre's official website for the full tour schedule.


  1. Saw this tonight for its first performance at the Winnipeg Fringe Festival. The two actors have the needed energy for the parts, but the actual play itself needs to go back for rewrites. It is a peculiar blend of in depth knowledge of Houdini's life and outright embracing of fallacies. Some in the audience giggled over the using of dolls for a 'bridge jump' and the naked jail escape at Scotland yard. The selection of actual magic ranged from very nice to several outright flubs that even my non magic friends caught. A brief spirit cabinet, straight jacket escape a bit too lighthearted for my taste and metamorphosis as the closing effect. If perhaps this was rewritten with an eye for focusing the work as a whole it could be memorable to see.