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Unidentified Human Remains about relationships

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Theatre XTra’s latest production of Canadian playwright Brad Frasers’ Unidentified Human Remains and the True Nature of Love is full of sex, drugs and violence, but  director Shelley Scott wants the audiences to focus on the characters, March 4-6.Andrea Montgomery and Jay Whitehead. Photo by Richard Amery
“It is a dark play, but it actually is a comedy,” she said adding the story is about a group of 20-something friends  living in Edmonton who are being stalked by a serial killer in the early ’90s.
“There are some very funny moments and some overly scary moments,” Scott continued adding she saw the play in Toronto in 1991, though it first opened in Calgary.
“I like the fact that these characters are very close to the age of our actors. It’s closer than they are in a lot of the main stage productions. I also like the relationships between the characters in a very scary situation,” Scott continued adding the cast has melded well together. Three of them, Jay Whitehead (David), Andrea Montgomery (Candy) and Ryan Reese (Kane) jumped right out of  the run of “Hair” and into rehearsals for  “Unidentified Human Remains and the True Nature of Love.”
Like all Theatre XTra productions, this one is being run on a shoestring budget, so the set  is sparse, with just a couch and a bed at centre stage, and the costumes are basic, allowing the audience to focus on the characters and performances.
Scott has taught all of the students in her classes but  has never directed them before. She said having Jay Andrea Montgomery and Jay Whitehead. Photo by Richard AmeryWhitehead as part of the cast will help push the other actors into a whole different level of performance.
“It’s not typical (to have a faculty member on stage) but Jay has BFA  in acting, so he adds a level of professionalism and he brings a strong level of  acting ability,” she said.
“It’s like in competitive sports, you want to play an opponent who is better than you because it makes our own game better.”
Scott’s vision for the production is to emphasize the relationships between the characters.
“It’s about people trying to find love and make  a connection with each other. this play has a warm heart in the middle of the ugliness, so we want to focus on their relationships,” Scott said.
‘Unidentified Human Remains and the ‘True Nature of Love’ runs March 4-6 in the David Spinks Theatre at 8 p.m. each night with an additional matinee at 2 p.m. on March 6.
 Tickets are available for $11 regular and $7 for students and seniors. Call  the box office at 403-329-2616
—By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
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