The London Free Press raves about Corin Raymond’s upcoming Bookworm show at the London Fringe Festival. Catch Corin on the Frige circuit this summer; only four shows left in London!
BRADBURY’S DEATH WEIGHS ON BOOKWORM
By JOE BELANGER, THE LONDON FREE PRESS
There is no doubt Corin Raymond wept openly on a train last week headed for London to perform at the13th Annual London Fringe Festival.
In Raymond’s hand for the train ride was the book, The Illustrated Man, written by the great American sci-fi writer Ray Bradbury, author of The Martian Chronicles, The Golden Apples of the Sun, Fahrenheit 451 and Something Wicked This Way Comes.
Raymond had just learned of Bradbury’s death at age 91 and no more would something new his way come from one of his author heroes whose words provide the framework for Raymond’s one-man show, Bookworm.
So when Raymond stepped onto the stage located on the third floor above APK Live at the corner of Wellington and York streets to perform Bookworm, surely there was sadness in his heart.
But it was a sadness that fuelled even more passion into Raymond’s autobiographical show about the love of his twice-widowed, history teacher father for his son and their shared passion for the written word.
On stage there are no props, save for a stack of books on a stool; no light designed to ebb and flow with the action and emotion; no supporting sound effects; in fact, little that resembles traditional theatre.
There is only a man, Raymond, talking, telling stories about his life from early childhood in Ontario’s far north until he boarded that train bound for London last Wednesday.
And it was a compelling, near magical and, perhaps for some, a transforming performance by a man whose extraordinary skills as a storyteller compel you to want to pick up another book, even if it’s one you’ve read before.
It is the haunting prologue to Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes that is the common thread throughout the show.
And, in our digital, narcissistic world of social media, texting, video, computer games, television, attention deficit and the pursuit of instant and constant gratification, Raymond is a beacon of hope and inspiration for the written word and its power to transport children and adults alike to new worlds, new ideas, new goals and new aspirations.
Seeing Raymond’s show should be mandatory for everyone, but especially parents and teachers, perhaps part of the curriculum in our schools.
This show is a must-see and will be performed again Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.
Four stars out of five.