By Craig Schneider
Just in time to get your Irish up, this interactive Dinner Theater now playing at the Station Restaurant will make a great date night. Many years ago, my wife and I saw “Tony and Tina’s Wedding” in the Village. It was half the cost of Broadway and you got an Italian Dinner as well. The audience was on the wedding guest list and also in the show. Flanagan’s wake is another spawn of that ground breaking show of structured improv and dinner. In Grapplin, County Sligo, local ne’er do well Flanagan has died, drowned in a vat of Guinness. The locals hold a Wake in his remembrance and everyone in the audience is on the guest list and many of us ended up in the show.
The first order of business in the serving of the Greens, Bread and a tasty Sausage Soup. I liked the centerpiece at each table that holds all of the crackers, butter, S&P and sugar. The Cast Member assigned to each table tells you a bit about their character and makes you feel like Family. Haven’t we all wanted to be Irish for a day and speak in brogue? Look out for the “Farcs in the Road”, as this farce travels all over the map. There is singing, speaking in Gaelic, bad audience step dancing , a reading from the lost Gospel of Kevin, the reading of Flanagan’s will, a fishing story about a monkey and a trial at the bar over the deceased’s estate.
The zany veteran cast includes B.J. Waide as “Fiona Finn” the many years fiancée of Flanagan and champion keener. Carrie Smith plays witchy woman Kathleen Mooney and plays the piano. In one bit of improv at our table, Kathleen told Fiona to “Mind your P’s and Q’s”, with Fiona replying: “Peas and Carrots? Kathleen: “No”. Fiona: “Oh, Pints and Quarts!”. Tim Wickham portrays Flanagan’s kilt wearing best mate, “Brian Ballybunion” and he sits in on piano a few times. David Durst is the mayor and bar owner and Jennifer Blair is the Poet with a good singing voice. Barry McAndrew of course, is the Priest “Fr. Damon Fitzgerald”, who spouts a lot of blarney about the Bible. “Denise” Edmunds is the feisty mother Flanagan.
The Main course consisted of Sheppard’s Pie, Ham and Cabbage. Very simple but filling. Everyone seemed to enjoy the meal and the Bread Pudding that followed later. Congrats to Chef Sue Hamp. The show is a little bit bawdy, but it was all in good fun. I was disappointed that there was no Erin Go-Braless in the Cast. Upcoming performance dates are Friday, March 17th, 7 PM, Saturday, March 18th and Saturday, March 25th with a 5:30 PM start, and Sunday March 26th at 2:30 PM. Please go online to www.canterburyfeast.com or call the Box Office at (814) 864-2022 to make your reservations.