CALGARY - One Yellow Rabbit's Five Hole: Tales of Hockey Erotica purports to zero in on two of Canada's favourite pastimes.
According to playwright David Bidini, that would be hockey and sex or, more specifically, sex in hockey.
In the opening skit entitled Joan, a pair of hockey players (Michael Green and Andy Curtis) obsess about the new female goalie on their team.
It's raunchy fun as Green's character details his use of pornography to sublimate his actual desire to have sex with curvaceous teammate.
Joan was a good skit to kick off the play because it warns the audience just how graphic the language and images in Five Hole are going to be.
Denise Clarke takes centre stage next as the female goalie peppering her monologue with sexual innuendo as electrifying as her neon costume.
The Five Hole is pure Rabbit in that it is so wonderfully theatrical.
Clarke, who is also the show's choreographer, and director Blake Brooker know how to make a stage come alive and this is Five Hole's secret.
It uses so many different and exciting theatrical conventions, the audience is mesmerized as much by the visuals as the dialogue.
Why I Love Wayne Bradley shows the frustration of a closeted gay player (Curtis) who is smitten with Bradley, a Wayne Gretzky-like hockey idol.
To their credits, Bidini and Curtis make this skit both tragic and funny and a true metaphor for the kind of male bonding that is not supposed to happen in sports.
I Am Bobby Wolf is the show's funniest skit, in which an English player (Green) takes advice from a French Canadian cabbie (Curtis) on how to regain his prowess on and off the ice.
Clarke is hilarious as the cabbie's ancient mother who has developed a rejuvenating salve.
The tragic love affair in One Hundred Bucks provides Five Hole with its most-lyrical and moving story. It is hauntingly narrated by Bidini.
Each skit is accompanied by an original song from the Rheostatics, a lively band that understands the demands of the material.
After its brief run here at the Rabbit's High Performance Rodeo, Five Hole will go on tour. It needs some judicious editing.
As exciting as it may be, it is also self-indulgent and, in many places, over-written.
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