Starring Susan Coyne, Christine Horne. Written by Jordi Mand. Directed by Kelly Thornton. Tarragon Theatre Extra Space, to Oct. 7.
A third grade classroom is an unexpected location for soapy drama, but the parent-teacher interview at the centre of Nightwood Theatre’s Between the Sheets raises topics that involve not only sheets of paper—report cards, quizzes, and crafts—but also those of a far more intimate nature. Marion (Susan Coyne), a power-suited businesswoman and mother of eight-year-old Alex, arrives late to her scheduled appointment with Alex’s teacher, Teresa (Christine Horne). With a carefully crafted debut script by Jordi Mand and well-paced direction by Kelly Thornton, the play slowly reveals layer after layer of the scandal, resulting in an intricate seesawing power struggle between the two women. Both performances are strong and the subject matter is salacious, but in the end, Between the Sheets comes off as the theatrical equivalent of Desperate Housewives. It’s juicy and intriguing, but the content seems more like water-cooler gossip than a meaningful conversation.