Monday, 6 August 2012

ALL IN THE FAMILY: ‘Weddin’ Scamma’ is a wicked union of commotion and comedy

De Weddin’ Scamma (Stages Productions)
Director: Bunny Allen and Garfield Reid
Cast: Keith Ramsay, Maxwell Grant, Cavin Carty and introducing Etesia Ramsay
Venue: Stages Theatreplex, New Kingston

It’s long been proven that anything featuring the comic antics of Keith ‘Shebada’ Ramsay is bound to play out as a belly-busting laughter. But who would have guessed that with his (almost) equally hilarious and real-life sister Etesia along for the ride, it would be double the trouble and double the fun?

That’s precisely what unfolds in De Weddin’ Scamma, a rather thinly developed story that eventually finds its meat in the boisterous (but consistently superfunny) comic work of its cast, led by the unstoppable Ramsay pair, performing together for the first time in local commercial theatre.

Taking a hard look at the familiar rural-meets-urban class dynamics, scheming, and familial relationships, the entertaining play follows unabashed con artist Keithy (Ramsay) who leaves country for Kingston to help with plans for his younger sister Sandy’s (Dainty Bellanfantie) wedding to devoted fiancé Tony (Carty) whose father (Grant), as it turns out, utterly despises Sandy. Throw into the mix the man-hungry Joycie (Ramsay, who alternates with Ramona Miller) and the stage is set for a raw, rib-tickling blend of commotion and comedy, deception and greed.

On close analysis you find that there are gaping holes in the plot and the proceedings don’t always heed to logic, but it is virtually impossible to find time to complain when Keith and Estesia – who are doubtless the best thing about the play – command the spotlight. Is Jamaican theatre really ready for this dynamite family act? Ready or not, I suggest you tightly fasten your seatbelts. Tyrone’s Verdict: B-

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