Perfect Pie

From 03/23/2001 to 04/15/2001


Two women haven?t seen each other since a life-changing incident 20 years ago. In the course of an afternoon when the two meet up again, past and present electrically collide with laughter, tears, mystery, and home-grown wisdom as a buried secret reveals the different paths the women?s lives have taken.


The reviews are in.

“A kitchen sink drama about a pair of Canadian women who rekindle their friendship after a 25 year separation hardly sounds like the stuff of a truly great evening of theater. Even though Wendy Knox’s uppity performance company opened this show in March, the four enthralling performances dance in my head still. Knox cobbled together a play of small moments with tenderness, honesty, and grace. I hardly ever use the word perfect in a review. But Perfect Pie came as close to anything that I saw in 2001 to earning that adjective.”

Dominic Papatola, Pioneer Press Year in Review

“When Frank Theatre founder and artist director Wendy Knox picks a play, there’s usually a complex and compelling set of reasons behind her choice.”

“Such is the case with PERFECT PIE, a drama by Canadian playwright Judith Thompson. Knox liked the idea of staging the work just three weeks after its U.S. premiere at Philadelphia’s Wilma Theatre. The script has the intimacy and gritty realism that’s a signature of Frank Theater shows.”

“Just as important, though, Knox liked the script for the rich, well-rounded roles it offered to a pair of actresses in their 30s and 40s.”

“‘Women just kind of disappear from plays after about the age of 30,” she said. “I think, when actresses get a little older, they start to feel underused or overlooked. But I this (script) does a pretty good job of giving the girls something to chew on.'”

Dominic Papatola, Pioneer Press

“Looking at the story for Judith Thompson’s PERFECT PIE, you may not consider the play an obvious pick for Frank Theatre. In brief, Thompson’s script tells of a reunion between two childhood girlfriends from Marmora, Ontario, as they share rhubarb pie and reminisce about their lost youth. This is print, so you could not see me yawning as I typed that description, but trust me–I yawned. Certain words in the plot summary seem designed to be soporific: Ontario, rhubarb pie, reminisce, Marmora. I’m yawning again. So what is this play doing at Frank Theatre, which in the past few years has brought us Bertolt Brecht’s THE THREEPENNY OPERA and Heiner M?ller’s DESCRIPTION OF A PICTURE, EXPLOSION OF A MEMORY, and will return to Brecht this fall with the seldom-produced THE RESISTIBLE RISE OF ARTURO UI? We are talking about Wendy Knox, an artistic director whose Marxist and feminist (and Marxist-feminist?) play selections have been matched in eccentricity by the droll performances she coaxes out of actors (consider, for example, the puppet-like histrionics of Heidi Fellner as Polly Peachum in Frank’s THREEPENNY OPERA). The Frank Theatre can always be counted on to provide audiences with an invigorating, and, based on the plot description of PERFECT PIE–well, doesn’t it seem, just a bit too pedestrian? The answer, of course, is that PERFECT PIE is stranger than its outline would suggest.”

Max Sparber, City Pages