There are eight simply superb plays being performed live on stage this week, at Short and Sweet. Captivating drama, strange circumstances, unique outlooks, and laugh-out-loud entertainment galore.
This year in a big new venue for S+S, and comfortably seating a maximum of 171. Top 80 Week One, Thursday 1st February 2018 until Sunday. The S+S festival has new shows every week for eight weeks, and runs through to April with both a Top 80 program (Thursdays-Fridays-Saturdays at 7.30pm and Sundays at 6.30pm) together with a separate Wildcards program (Saturdays at 3.30pm and Sundays at 2.30pm). The S+S gala finals take place in April 2018.
(1) “Another Dead Body Play” is a debut play for new Sydney company Pumphouse Productions. Comedy Playwright Steven Williams provides us with two incompetent police detectives, with juicy red-herrings, obligatory MacGuffins and multiple clever clichés, giving the audience many reams of laughter opportunities. Starring Lucy Tassell, Remy Danoy and Nigel Malcolm.
(2) “The Dusty Hour” starring actor, writer, director, Victoria Hopkins. Shakespeare drama monologues, with on-stage inspired costume changes matching each new character, easily delivering the best of Shakespeare.
(3) “I Like Chocolate, is that So Bad?” by Victorian writer Katie Lee, is a comic vehicle for Short+Sweet veteran Henrietta Stathopoulos’ Captivate youth theatre company, that hails from Western Sydney. “Chocoholics Anonymous” meeting goes completely off course because of a new arrival, equally funny and sad. Starring young actors Gabrielle Green, Guet McAcuek, Nicholas Menouhos and Connor McInerney.
(4) “The Eulogy” by Kel Vance and directed by Brendan Paul. Important and moving message piece. Teenage boy in a wheelchair, observes his own funeral, and reacts to the eulogy from the girl next door, but all is not what it seems.
Her abuse from constantly changing foster families, his stalking, his unrequited love, his/her opportunities lost and her reading of his diary as part of the eulogy, leading to an unexpected conclusion. Starring Lola Bond and Archit Mahajan.
(5) “The Pacific Solution” written by Bill Jordan and expertly directed by Deanne Gibbs. No degrees of separation, drama from an engagement ending and then he uses the honeymoon cruise tickets. Searching for love, murder/suicide resulting from an almost perfect parter swap on that cruise ship. Wonderfully theatrical. Starring Owen Power, Mel Day, Cassandra Law, Ingtid Lenert, Blake Beattie.
(6) “The Problem With Philosophy” by Dr Wendy J. Dunn and directed by Jordan King-LaCroix. Entertaining Socrates historical drama with his wife Xanthippe, and set on the night before his ordained death. Starring Paul Byrne, Cristiane Bocchi and Chris Lee.
(7) “Reality Check by Elizabeth”, on-line dating disasters of epic proportions, very clever comedy monologue expertly performed by actor, writer, director, film-maker Annisa Belonogoff. This is a very lonely woman, a teacher, that no man should willingly ask out for a date. Humorous audience participation together with her as-if huge supply of unanswerable questions, provided endless laughter from an ever appreciative audience.
(8) “How to Write a Ten Minute Play – The Ten Minute Play” by Pete Malicki and directed by Bretton Reis. Comedy masterpiece, should be performed at all writing workshops, to remind all writers exactly what should never ever be written, and never ever performed on stage. Absolutely Brilliant Satire, theatrical with a dash of irony too. Starring Chloe Baldacchino, Sean Foster, Ally Foy.
Short+Sweet Theatre (@ Tom Mann Theatre) Academy of Music and Performing Arts (AMPA) 136 Chalmers Street Surry Hills
All photos by Chris Lundie.