Katie Pollock’s NORMAL is an intriguing nigh in the theatre.
The play is set in an unstated town where everyone is living ordinary lives then one day a young woman Polly develops tics and loses control of some of her body’s expressions and movements much like a person suffering from Tourette’s syndrome. She has medical tests which come back negative. Locals are distraught by what’s happening to her. By the end of the show other people in the town have developed a similar condition.
There’s a lot to ruminate over with this play. What is it really about? There is no tidy ending and the playwright leaves it up to each member of the audience to make up their own mind. My take is that the play is about young women who have problems expressing themselves and as a result they develop a Tourettes like condition, a sign of how repressed they are. They need to somehow free themselves, to develop their own identities. By the end of the play, Poppy has at least in some ways liberated herself, whilst her friends lag behind. Continue reading KATIE POLLOCK’S ‘NORMAL’ @ THE OLD 505→
PRAMKICKER is a small, modestly created show but, as one might guess from the title, it is a far from delicate offering. From the first hilariously strategically placed f word to the final heartbreaking sequences this a mighty production which kicks it out of the park, pramwise.
For, Jude has actually kicked a pram and followed it up with worse. Her fuck laden speech to a group of similar misfits places her squarely in a room being punished for this and ancillary misdemeanours: like, being childless by choice. Accompanied by her sister Sue, we will get to understand their lives, their relationships and will experience two women we rarely see represented on stages without their being burdened by tropes and stereotypes. It’s a joyful rendering. Continue reading PRAMKICKER: KICKIN’ IT THEATRE FROM VOX TC→
“It’s a travesty, mate.” This is Keith’s assessment of the refurbishment of The Gleneagles Hotel, Dulwich Hill that takes place in local playwright Richie Black’s promising new play The Local. “Schnitzel parma is now $23 and sweet potato wedges are offered instead of chips. ” The obnoxious Keith (Steve Maresca) is complaining to his brother and cricket captain Ben (Jamie Collette).
The rooftop bar, yummy cocktails and VIP area infuriate the volatile Keith. Jamie Collett’s Ben, in a more nuanced performance, is more accepting of the gentrification of their local pub and the influx of the private school crowd.
Keith and Ben are in the pub after a game of cricket and Richie Black’s text is littered with wise and humorous cricket references and metaphors. There are also many amusing references to celebrities and Sydney landmarks such as Richard Wilkins, Ivan Milat and The Ivy. Continue reading RICHIE BLACK’S THE LOCAL @ EXCHANGE HOTEL BALMAIN→
Don’t read this review. Seriously. If you are a lover of unique, intimate and relevant theatre, simply open a new tab, go to the Sydney Fringe site and book tickets to CRAZY BRAVE. The reason for the urgency? This show is one of the must see of the Fringe season and word is already travelling.
Written by Michael Gurr, political speechwriter, most notably for Steve Bracks, author, broadcaster and playwright, CRAZY BRAVE was written in 2000 but it is as crisp and germane as if it was newly minted.
A motley group of young people who are pretty much against everything are contrasted with Harold, an old time commie whose rebellion against the establishment has landed him on hard times. Harold fought from within. The modern fight is more blatant. Where will your loyalties lie when you experience this show? Continue reading Michael Gurr’s CRAZY BRAVE @ Chippendale→
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