It would be absurd to walk into a lounge room you mistook for a toilet and find yourself trapped in a very funny play. It would be a bit like being born and then trying to work out where you are, who you are and if these are your absurd lines or if they have been written by an insecure, egotistical playwright.
The anonymous HE, well played by David Jeffrey, walks into a comfortable middle class lounge room, mistaking it for a toilet, sees the audience and is embarrassed. He attempts to go back out of the room but the door will not open. He unsuccessfully tries the doors on the other two walls which only leaves the invisible fourth wall. After some deliberately predictable miming the fourth wall does turn out to be impenetrable. Continue reading PLAYTHING @ DEPOT THEATRE MARRICKVILLE→
THROUGH A BEADED LASH is about ways of seeing. The character who coins the term in the play, now showing at the Depot Theatre, is Brent … in his drag persona as Catherine. Brent doesn’t actually want to be a woman. The long lashes and gowns and wigs are just a structure for expression. Drag is its own art. It’s about perception. I have never donned a beaded lash but, from the sidelines, I saw the world that Catherine inhabited and I was ready to go back. And I am so pleased to have had the opportunity.
Adam seems to be an observer too. He is closing up his gay bookshop on Oxford Street after 25 years. He has seen the ‘Golden Mile’ through its heyday. As has Zoe, his informal business partner. They have known each other since 1984 and shared each other’s loves and losses. Having made a packet selling to a developer, Adam is ready to move on but Zoe needs a little reflective time. She has brought with her a chest of treasures from the 1980s. Will these half remembered relics open them to remembering or end up in the skip with the useless shop fittings? Continue reading THROUGH A BEADED LASH @ THE DEPOT THEATRE→
This world premiere serves up a mighty tranche de vie which is colourful yet concise. This hectic relationships drama is also easily identifiable as being set in Sydney. Robert Allan’s work explores the ramifications of wrongly healed damage in our lives and the chain reactions it will start.
A clever script blend of conversation and poetry, effective triptych-like set and collective command of theatrical devices protect the piece’s two relationship fables from ever slipping into soap opera status.
Delayed exposition and half-mysteries set the two pairs of characters and crowd on a roller coaster race between hope and hurt. The savage climaxes surrounding the intersection of the stories glow with a rainbow of non-cliché outcomes, including the very uncomfortable and controversial.
The fine cast is finely directed, with all actors emerging as talented survivors of the play’s parallel storytelling. The two contrasting situations of domestic stress are imbued at times with engagingly current comic moments.
Forced hope from worlds expertly evoked on each side of the stage blend only in the play’s final moments. Mismanaged suffering at its breaking point also fuels explosive results, well performed by the ensemble.
Special mention goes to Carla Nirella’s direct and interactive monologues throughout as the struggling girlfriend Fiona. These candid moments are exquisitely engaging and well layered.
Also skilfully bitter-sweet in its execution is Cherilyn Price’s portrayal without costume change of her character, Aggie. She is equally penetrating and measured depicting a fourteen year old child-prodigy victim as she is an adult dealing with multiple tragedies.
This substantial two-act play’s yo-yo focus with overlapping entries and exits suffers no risk of being difficult to follow at length. The material tempts the audience rather than tiring it.
Become a social juror at this intimate city venue’s premiere of AN ORDINARY PERSON and you will witness the efforts of the Sydney Independent Theatre Company’s (SITCO) suitably contrasted troupe of morality players. Believable human struggles in a new guise will resonate for some time after.
AN ORDINARY PERSON plays the Old Fitzroy Theatre, 129 Dowling Street, Woolloomooloo, corner Cathedral Street, until November 16, playing Tuesdays to Sundays. Bookings- www.sitco.net.au or 1300307264.
SYDNEY REVIEWS OF Screen + Stage + Performing Arts + Literary Arts + Visual Arts + Cinema + Theatre +