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FRINGE REVIEW: Bathsheba and the Books

Calling all Bible readers, past and present, this play may be for you.
Jeff Halaby, a St. Albert businessman, stars in Bathsheba and the Books. SUPPLIED/Photo

Bathsheba and the Books

ATB Westbury Theatre

Venue 1, Fringe Theatre Arts Barns

3 Stars

Calling all Bible readers, past and present, this play may be for you.

Bathsheba and the Books, starring St. Albert businessman and prolific performer Jeff Halaby, is a four-person, one-act farce that tells the tale of how the Bible came to be, but this time under extreme deadline pressure with no time to think critically.

Bathsheba, the wife of King David (of David and Goliath fame) and mother of Solomon, is tired of being known solely as a sex symbol and wants to contribute to the intellectual world by putting together a concise and thoughtful collection of moral writings.

Enter Hiram, played by Halaby, who is struggling to put the necessary funds together to build the Temple of Solomon (in reference to Hiram's role in the construction of the Temple of Jerusalem). When Bathsheba scoffs at Hiram's request to put her John Hancock on a few thousand revealing photos of herself, Hiram decides to hijack Bathsheba's plans, and pitches to Solomon that Bathsheba's Bible may be extremely lucrative.

With Solomon onboard, and tired of construction delays on the temple, he orders his mother and Hiram to finish putting together the Bible in 15 minutes so mass production can begin. 

What follows is a comedic look at how Bathsheba, Hiram, and Qoheleth (the eventual author of Ecclesiastes) decide what does and does not belong in the Bible, and how the three argue for personal favourites.

Bathsheba and the Books would be best understood and enjoyed by those familiar with the Bible; however, the modern jokes make the tale accessible for agnostics and atheists alike.

The simple set and colourful costumes add to the play's enjoyment, and the cast's chemistry is unmistakable.

Jack Farrell

Jack Farrell

About the Author: Jack Farrell

Jack Farrell joined the St. Albert Gazette in May, 2022.
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