Tag Archives: Bondi Feast

BONDI FEAST : THE CHOO CHOO TROUPE PRESENTS LOST LOST CABARET @ THE BONDI PAV

The Lost Lost Cabaret

The Choo Choo Troupe is obviously a force for good.  They describe themselves on their website as “ a collective of Sydney & Melbourne based performers who are tied together by an innate desire to act like idiots.”  And the reality is, you can’t be an idiot on your own… that’s just weird.  There is safety in numbers.

THE LOST LOST CABARET was the final event of the BONDI FEAST and it is apparently the little sister to London’s The Lost Cabaret, and misguided brother to Melbourne’s The Lost Lost Lost Cabaret.  According to their blurb ….  Throughout 2016, The Lost Lost Cabaret was a regular show at Glebe’s now defunct Mr. Falcon’s.  And now it has returned!  For one night only!  At Bondi Feast!  

Last night the six artists who were performing were squeezed into the Mini Theatre with its miniscule stage and very few seats..  It’s a chance to see these performers up close and personal  and the use of small venues is just one of the attractions of BONDI FEAST programming.  You also get to put Sold Out your next gig.  On this occasion, you can put Sold Out REaaaaly REaaaaly Early!

One of the other advantages is that you have a supportive space to try out your material, since another reality is that you simply don’t know if your gear works until you stand up.  “I must have you warmed up by now,” says one artist when a clap-desirous pun just lies there.  There was a fair amount of trying out and there were some lie-there gags.  All terrific learning material for sure in a Choo Choo safe environment.

The 2 MCs for the evening, Bobbie and Wanda (Debbie Zukerman and Alicia Gonzalez) arrived with some physical comedy which was supported by preparation and personality.  But the problems that all would have with the intimacy of the venue, only having the one gig with little preparation time in the space, and the tyranny of props and costumes that won’t behave,  also arrived with these characters.  They had fun mining the comic possibilities of that well-trod stand-up fare: the embarrassment of incompetence.

They were ably supported by Steve on the Keys!  His work was top notch, he was engaged, responsive, creative and supportive. The other 3 members of last night’s troupe were an elderly citizen who reads faxed hands … probably to supplement her pension, a Lorca inspired sad sack in a really stunning  costume and a doctor armed with a stethoscope to read what is in random audience members heads and play it out imaginatively on set.  

There was a bit where members of the public were let loose with surgical tongs, some gross-out stuff, some female-centric gags, even a lesbian sub-plot!  The audience laughed and volunteered and congratulated them afterwards and the Choo Choo Troupe rose again to inspire new idiots in the nicest possible way.    

 

BONDI FEAST : CLARA CUPCAKES : THE WORST @ THE LITTLE THEATRE, BONDI PAVILION

CLARA CUPCAKES: THE WORST is a wonderful production. When we first meet our player/character, we do wonder though, will the wonder she sees around her keep us engaged for the length of our time together. Wonder on, till truth make all things plain. Yep, this is a Shakespearean clown snuggled away in a tiny theatre at the tail end of the Bondi Feast.

Clara Cupcakes invented a game in 2001. The year of Enron and the ipod. A bad game. THE WORST. This Dire Straits-ish, blocky, animated quest was essentially unplayable. Until now.

On the small stage is an octopus. She is purple and she is excitable. She is the inheritor of Puck and Bottom and a bit of Dogberry with the distinct whiff of Gypsy Rose Lee and Ethel Merman. Not to mention Siri beatboxing… just ask her … “I could do this all day!” And she is our hero. She will play the game and interact with the graphics in an attempt to re-enter the undersea castle from which she has been rudely ejected like the last cartridge of a Nintendo 64. Continue reading BONDI FEAST : CLARA CUPCAKES : THE WORST @ THE LITTLE THEATRE, BONDI PAVILION

BONDI FEAST : the ethics of paediatric haircut for long hair

It was a bit hairy there for a few minutes. I thought a scuffle was going to break out for sure. Love a tough audience but I reckon there was going to be some biffo after the show. Ires were raised and conciliation was not on the agenda when such a divisive topic was let off the chain at the Bondi Feast.

As for me, I’m a barber’s daughter from the dark days when kids did what their parents wanted, where infant autonomy did not exist and no-one had the temerity to juxtapose consent and abuse. So I am seriously torn.

Well … not seriously. None of this is serious. It’s a fun, new Australian work called the ethics of paediatric haircut for long hair. Seriously!

The debate occurs between a scholarly, academic, clinically precise doctor in surgical scrubs and a scrubber hairdresser who specialises in cutting kids hair. The audience launches in and the debate is hijacked by the choir of some medical product from ProsiPharm, trying to further their own agenda.

The show is the brainchild of Isobel Yeap (the doc) and Antoinette Barbouttis and Yeap plays the doctor giving the lecture with Elysia Boyd as Paloma Orange, her antagonist. I especially liked the Doctor character who is, initially, logical and precise and authoritative. As the show progresses her warmth and passion engage the audience and she has a lovely little monologue which really drea me in.

The Paloma Orange character however was abrasive, vicious, snide, simplistic, sneering and arrogant – well delivered.

This was a short, wry, irony- heavy morsel. Nothing serious for sure … despite the interjections of some elements of the audience. Tasty!

the ethics of paediatric haircut for long hair plays again at the Bondi Pavilion Friday at 9:30pm.

 

BONDI FEAST : CONFIDENTIAL MEMO RE EXCLUSION ZONE : A WALKING TOUR

CONFIDENTIAL MEMO

To: Editor, Sydney Arts Guide

From : Judith Greenaway

RE: Exclusion Zone: A Walking Tour

Hi David,

Just a quick, late night note about that little mission you sent me on to see Exclusion Zone: A Walking Tour at the Bondi Feast.

I’m sorry I won’t be able to send anything through about the show. We had to sign a damned Non-Disclosure Agreement. Along with a Liability Waiver I might add.

But, just between us, I reckon you should really check it out. The guy, Caleb Lewis, I think it is, is an absolute nutter. It’s just obvious from the time he tells you that Euclidian mathematics and Newtonian physics don’t apply where he’s taking us. Yep, truly, he says that.

And he is so freaking believable I just couldn’t help but get sucked in. Seriously … the man has all these statistics and pictures and diagrams and shit like that. It wouldn’t surprise me if there’s something in it. Did I just say that out loud … LOL. Pack your tin-foil hat is all I’m sayin.

Anyway, it’s so much weird stuff so well delivered… you really have to sift through it. Soooo many dates and numbers. 1984 keeps popping up and 42 and 1359. You would probably love that but I was just worried about some of the people he was talking about … freaky … not to mention poor old Ricochet the cat.

You really have to anchor yourself in the here and now and find a way to be alert despite the quite immersive, seductive, logically illogical, ‘alternative fact’ nature of it all. That Caleb guy is a real storyteller and you get drawn into this bloody web of um ..sort of … I dunno. You know!!

Especially in some of those back streets where the pavement needs work . You could fall into some of those cracks and disappear for ever. Which reminds me. Don’t take Aunt Maude with you. There is a lot of walking and it’s fast and that guy has really long legs. Remember that time she wandered off, got lost and we had to put up signs on the telephone poles … we don’t want that again do we?

Anyway David, I’m off to bed. Exclusion Zone: A Walking Tour is happening again on Friday and Saturday at 6:45, heaven only knows why they let this crackpot loose. But go and have a look and let me know what you think.

Judith

Bluebeard; or, the Marriage Mistakes of a Nameless Bride @ Bondi Pav

BLUEBEARD; OR, THE MARRIAGE MISTAKES OF A NAMELESS BRIDE is playing as part of the Bondi Feast. The Feast, which is held at the Bondi Pavilion, has numerous venues and I have been to pretty much all of them these past 2 weeks. Until tonight. Curiosity drew me.

This production takes place in the male change room of the venerable 1920s building. The audience sit on the benches with the drama happening in front of them and around them and hidden in the next cubicle. Part radio play, part immersion, part spectator experience: the show begins with a ritual.

The solitude of a shower. Then the donning of clothes and of the self which is shown to the world. The actors look at us as if in a mirror and check that the prsona is all tidy, correct and at its best before taking it away from the intimacy of dressing.

Melissa Hume and Curly Fernandez are the actors and the characters remain nameless but we are seeing Bluebeard and the Bride. Our guide is Gideon Payten-Griffiths, a troubadour of sorts who provides music to guide emotions, to preface events and to warn of danger. Continue reading Bluebeard; or, the Marriage Mistakes of a Nameless Bride @ Bondi Pav

BONDI FEAST : THE ETERNITY OF THE WORLD (PARTS MISSING)

 

Nope.

No way.

Didn’t understand it.

Didn’t get it.

Can’t review it.

Instead.

In the true spirit of deconstructed post-modernist anarchic performance I saw this …

Venue problems … the bane of the touring show. Suggestion: instead of telling people to move away from the speakers just turn the f’ing thing down. Didn’t hear most of it.

Saw it all though. Traverse seating!

Props and costume changes and scripts read from loose papers and set pieces … so a plot, through line, a sequence, a vague structure must exist. Continue reading BONDI FEAST : THE ETERNITY OF THE WORLD (PARTS MISSING)

THE BONDI FEAST : SOME EARLY HIGHLIGHTS

It’s certainly my idea of a cheap theatre menu. Tickets are $10-$20 and one can choose from delights sweet, spicy or salty.

First on my plate at BONDI FEAST?

STORY CLUB SOLO: ZOE NORTON LODGE, a storyteller who knows how to pull you straight from a wintery beach into the warmth of a loving family. Put your hand up who here is not my mother? Why are you here? She asks of the large audience show of hands … It’s really cold. More disturbing perhaps is the number of people who yell and raise arms to the question, Who here is my mother? Feels like a family.

And what a family! Not quite what we think a good Greek girl who grew up in leafy Annandale might be standing on stage talking about. Aberrant grandparents who hate each other, dodgy neighbours with whom to pull cones and a surprisingly coherent 2 and a half year old hell bent on ruling the pre-school. Continue reading THE BONDI FEAST : SOME EARLY HIGHLIGHTS

Someone Like U Presents Charlotte Josephine’s Bitch Boxer as part of the Bondi Feast

Bitch Boxer-inset
Charlotte Josephine’s one woman show delivers quite a punch.

BITCH BOXER begins before the audience is really aware that it has started. The house lights are on when 21 year old female boxer, Chloe wanders onto the acting space to start her workout. Skipping in a gentle, school yard fashion she sees but does not react to us (the audience) as we focus on taking our seats.

As her skipping speeds up in a well-established cardio routine, the rope noise is as loud as the pre-show music and the house lights fade. By then the athlete is ringed by light and moving in a blur. In the same way as this character slowly enters our consciousness, performer Jordan Cowan gradually, with craft and charisma, lands the pugilist protagonist squarely in our midsection. Continue reading Someone Like U Presents Charlotte Josephine’s Bitch Boxer as part of the Bondi Feast