In Box of Freedom a Romanian comedian escapes her homeland in a container ship bound for Canada.
In Box of Freedom a Romanian comedian escapes her homeland in a container ship bound for Canada.

There is a compelling story waiting to escape from Box of Freedom. It just needs more time at sea.

The story of a Romanian comedian who escapes Nicolae Ceaușescu’s repressive regime in the 1980s inside a shipping container bound for Canada, Box of Freedom has all the hallmarks of a potentially harrowing twist on the immigrant story.

Unfortunately, the execution in the version currently playing at the Vancouver Fringe is at times difficult to watch. From poor sight lines to a number of wooden performances, it fails to resonate.

The one bright light here is Sonia Suvagau as the comedian Dora. Unfortunately, her terrific performance only served to highlight the deficiencies in others.

This is one show that deserves a second chance, but it is difficult to recommend in this iteration. A good dramaturg would help.

Box of Freedom continues at Studio 1398 on Granville Island as part of the Vancouver Fringe Festival. Visit vancouverfringe.com for tickets and information.