Trial of Judith K - PHOTO

Ain’t it funny how trials seem more about process than they do about justice? That’s the impression you get from Thought For Food’s ‘The Trial of Judith K.’ on stage until February 14.


Turning the Big 3-0 is traumatic enough for anyone watching the calendar flip by another year. For Corporate Loans Clerks, Judith K. (Stephanie Belding) it’s the worst nightmare ever.

For this is the day that she awakes up to find two men in bedroom waiting to arrest her. The crime? Well that’s irrelevant, isn’t it?

But a promise to appear before Sunday interrogation inquiry is all that’s needed for Judith to clear the air. Or is it? Somehow, everyone seems to know about her case but the accused.

Loosely based on The Trial by Franz Kafka, this black comedy changes the lead character to a modern business woman who finds it impossible to escape the insanity unfolding around her. The more she delves into the bureaucratic nightmare the more her orderly world unravels.

Playwright Sally Clark tries to simplify matters for increased audience accessibility but this is still one long winding narrative road. Think back to Terry Gilliam’s 1985 cinematic offering Brazil (those who love it, love it a lot!) and you start to get the picture. It’s got a dash of funny and a dose of intrigue. In the end, it’s the kind of play that makes you wonder why society accepts answers more than it asks questions.

Hats off to Thought For Food for biting off more than any company can chew with a meticulous staging like this. Despite multiple location changes in Theatre Passe Muraille’s intimate Back Space, it relies on little more than a bed, movable doorways, and a table and two chairs, it achieves so much with so little.

Review by Jonathan O’Neil


THE TRIAL OF JUDITH K. by Sally Clark January 28 – February 14, 2016 THEATRE PASSE MURAILLE BACKSPACE, 16 Ryerson Avenue, Toronto TICKETS $20.00 – $30.00 416-504-7529 CAST Stephanie Belding, Toni Ellwand and Patrick Howarth, Helen Juvonen, Andrew Knowlton, Scott McCulloch and Cara Pantalone DIRECTOR Tyler Seguin SET David Poholko LIGHTING Jareth Li COSTUMES Miranda Vanlogerenberg SOUND DESIGN Alex Eddington FIGHT DIRECTION Siobhan Richardson STAGE MANGER Tamara Vuckovic

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