Tag Archives: Giant Dwarf


In May,  the bad ass babe club that is ‘Generation Women’ is holding their intergenerational storytelling evening on the theme ‘Sliding Doors’. Remember that 90s classic where Gwyneth Paltrow relives the moment she makes her train?

Yes, yes you do! We make choices everyday, most of them small (gym, or nap? kombucha or wine?) but over a course of a lifetime, some are quite literally life-changing. This month ‘Generation Women’ is exploring decisions that changed our lives forever, the ‘What if?’. Continue reading GENERATION WOMEN – DECISION MAKING STORIES TOLD LIVE


THE SEANCE: Giant Dwarf Theatre in Cleveland Street, Redfern.

Harrison Milas is putting on a seance to spook your socks off!

Using every magical and theatrical tool at his disposal, he will create a terrifying world of spirits and possessions, summonings and demons. The show will be completely faked, however please be advised that it will contain moments of strong shock, so viewers of a nervous disposition should seriously consider before booking.

WARNING: This show deals with simulated images of self harm and could be distressing to some viewers. Discretion is advised.

Harrison Milas is a Fake Psychic, offering palm readings, fortune telling and prophecies.  For Harry, magic is a way to communicate a message. It’s a way to share joy, passion and creativity with an audience of any size and any age. And Harry has performed for of all of them. He has entertained thousands all the way down to just one person.

For more information about the Seance at Giant Dwarf visit:




Is the road to self discovery still on the map?

“The artists red light surrealism broke new ground, Body Maps socio political commentary on objectification and the beauty myth pulled no punches” – Otago Daily Times

“Original, Outlandish, provocative & not to be missed” Macandmae.com

Navigating who we are has never been tougher. Access is blocked with the promise of beauty & perfection. The personal highway to our soul is in a multi lane gridlock with diversions from the self at every exit.

Psychedelic, Satirical, Personal & Political storytelling that’s packed to the rafters with puns, punches & possibilities. BODY MAP is deep dive across the consumer bordered planet and into our inner being, highlighting our capacity to transform despite the odds.

Cult Pioneer of Australian performance art, Glitta Supernova brings her multi award winning show BODYMAP direct from the Dunedin Fringe Festival;


“BODYMAP exuded both vulnerability and subterranean glamarama” – Alt Media


BODY MAP will take place on Saturday 27th May at the Giant Dwarf Theatre. Doors will open at 7.30 pm for an 8 pm performance.

For more about Body Map, visit https://giantdwarf.com.au/events/the-glitta-supernova-experience-body-map/
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Production Image: Sirmai Arts Marketing
Production Images: Geoff Sirmai.

THE FRINGE is my favourite theatre-going time of year and what a way to begin 2016’s season! The first sound cue rewinds loudly as a tape player reverses quickly over the heads to pull us back in time to the simple life. A time when Australian telly provided all the water cooler talk required for the week, when Kylie and Jason were our ambassadors to the world. And when hair was big and plots were small.

BATTLERS AND DREAMERS is billed as a musical “homage to 1980s TV soap operas” and homage is the perfect word. This is a show written and performed with loving hands which pours no scorn on the populist appeal of the Australian episodic dramas but rather, recreates that world gently and so allows us to embrace our embarrassment with nostalgia and revel in our excesses of passion with laughter.

The creators claim they have found the lost tapes of a short lived Australian soap and that initial rewind sound effect takes us to opening credits as the large cast montage their way to the final full-cast shot. You can’t beat a manufactured group smile as they stare directly out at the invisible camera!

And this is how we meet some of the residents of Mainsbridge. Charmayne (that’s char … main of course) Grundy (of course!) is desperately seeking stardom while being desperately in love with Shane … a conflicted loser who is a vacant as his lost memory. Charms’ olds, Geoff and Pam, own the pub and the boozer is going down the gurgler! They need the unreachable amount of a thousand dollars to save it. Geoff even tries to revive his old magic act … no wonder they are against Charmayne going on the stage.

Neighbour Lesley, a CWA feminist and man hater, and her boarder Danni are there to help the feeble plot. There must be a rash of amnesia in the town, as Danni can’t remember her past either : not even how she became confined to a wheelchair. Previous love interest to Pam, Constable Hardy; Shane’s dopey mate Dwayne and smarmy melodrama villain Developer Hardcastle round out the cast.

And what a cast! Really grouse. As Charms, Lauren Pegus, has serious denim credentials and squeezes an alphabet of emotion out the A to B character arc she travels. The plum eyeshadow helps! Not requiring a great voice helps too but Pegus can certainly sell a tune. Phillippe Klause’s Shane is, inexplicably, a rapper and he does this really well. He has hair that does not bear discussion and a way of interacting with the characters with absolutely no intelligence whatsoever. This is a positive comment, by the way. You sorta have ta see it to get it!

Kim Taylor’s Leslie is comically arch and she has a cracker line is close-up holds before fadeouts … hers is the first belly laugh of the show. As Danni, Jacqueline Marriot isn’t quite long-shot or close-up and the reveal suffers a bit from that inconsistency but I just loved her motorcycle mime.

Lynden Jones and Angeline Neville’s, Geoff and Pam also have to be seen to be believed. Watching them together is such a neat little package. It’s theatre level overacting which would be overwhelming on the small screen yet it doesn’t seem overwrought when you are watching it live. It’s a really neat trick! Then Jones can’t help himself and goes and steals the show!

There are quite a few highlights like that. The ‘Magnetic ‘song is pure showstopper. A nice job on this song and dance from Harley Connor. Connor’s Developer Hardcastle is not quite as good but he really rocks a red leather coat! The costumes are actually hilarious and changed often, even if it does cause longer than comfortable scene changes. They are ‘what were we thinking’ reflections of the period with matching earrings and bangles and bags.

But I would see BATTLERS AND DREAMERS again just for the quality of the Solid Gold style dancing from Rebecca Wewege and Joel Thomas. It was so perfectly placed in the text and the combination of TV best in show and 80’s dancewear was just wonderful.

As is this lovely script. It’s cliché ridden, slightly plotted, character thin . I can’t imagine how much work it takes to write this badly … well. Write well badly? You know what I mean. It’s dead set true blue and worth a prawn cocktail. Romy Bartz and Erin Brookhouse devised this new work, inspired by their shared history and affinity with the genre. While Romy’s mum, Belinda Giblin, appeared in classic Aussie shows such as The Sullivans and Sons and Daughters (where Romy spent much of her childhood on set), Erin’s grandfather, producer/writer Don Harley and his actress wife June Thody, worked in the same circles.

If you look deeply enough into BATTLERS AND DREAMERS you might see the art that sews this creative team together but why bother when there is a sequined mutton chop sleeved wedding dress to draw the eye. Some confections just need to be admired and enjoyed. Several times in my case. I’m going again if I can get a ticket.

BATTLERS AND DREAMERS is playing at the Midnight Shift and Giant Dwarf over THE FRINGE:-
The Midnight Shift 85 Oxford St Darlinghurst Thu 1, Fri 2, Sat 3 Sept at 7.30pm
The Giant Dwarf 199 Cleveland St Redfern Sat 10, Sun 11 Sept at 7pm



For something very different, it could well be time to join  the live studio audience for the 1637th episode of IRRATIONAL FEAR FACTOR – the game show where your greatest fears become your reality (but you win money and kitchen appliances so it’s totally worth it).

In this episode, office assistant Paige Hally has been nominated to overcome her crippling social anxiety and fear of public speaking to compete for the grand prize in one of our craziest challenges yet – a solo comedy show.

We’ve already had two accidental deaths this season so come along and let’s see if we can make it a third!


Saturday 27 August  between 7 pm and 8 pm at the Giant Dwarf theatre, 199 Cleveland Street, Redfern.

For more about Irrational Fear Factor, visit http://giantdwarf.com.au/events/paige-hally/
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Pop Pop @ The Giant Dwarf Theatre

Penny Greenhalgh

What a spectacle. Brilliant exciting stellar extravaganza, controlled and highly structured contexts for all the special effects and cast of thousands. POP POP was the sound of all those champagne corks opening the show as Penny Greenhalgh was carried in for her first entrance by a bevy of naked muscle men who obviously adored her.

Very expensive and extensive low mist creeps silently to fill the vast stage of Giant Dwarf in Cleveland Street as thousands of snowy white doves are launched to fly high over the arena. The sophisticated audio and lighting setup whirled and exploded with sound and colour as the goddess of comedy bid us all hello. Continue reading Pop Pop @ The Giant Dwarf Theatre

Kraken @ The Giant Dwarf

Trygve Wakenshaw in KRAKEN. Stano Murin Photography


FROM: The Sydney Audience at the Giant Dwarf in Redfern on the 23rd April.

TO: Lexicographers Worldwide

RE: Redefinition of ‘KRAKEN’

PREAMBLE: It has come to our attention that the current dictionary definition of the word ‘KRAKEN’ refers to some kind of mythological creature. The prime referencing now requires immediate updating.

SUGGESTED DEFINITION: Berserk, non-linear, stream of consciousness, abstract, absurdist, nutso performance. Continue reading Kraken @ The Giant Dwarf

I Spied @ Giant Dwarf

David Callan in his one man show I SPIED. Photo: Geoff Sirmai
David Callan in his one man show I SPIED. Photo: Geoff Sirmai

I SPIED is truth in advertising. David Callan worked for our esteemed National Security Agency, ASIO, for 7 years. After seeing his one man show tonight, maybe esteemed isn’t the right word to describe the organization. But I’m loath to use the word that springs to mind … they might be listening. He doesn’t give everything away but surely someone has their eye on this guy.

Despite being too tall and good looking to be a surveillance officer, David Callan is a funny man. What possessed him to think that his innately comic view of life was compatible with a career as a spy is well explained in his show. We also get an insight into the absurdities inside an organization which allows a clown to rise to a position of having every generated secret paper pass through his hands for filing. Callan is a clown but not a buffoon. He has a serious point to make about the ASIO he knew. Continue reading I Spied @ Giant Dwarf


Bob Carr knocks back a glass of Grange during his appearance on the show
Bob Carr refuses a glass of Grange offered during his appearance

Vibrant venue, Giant Dwarf, in Redfern is the new home of alternative comedy in Sydney. Previously known as The Performance Space, the theatre produced cutting edge and experimental shows from 1983 to 2007.

A RATIONAL FEAR, described as “60 minutes of evidence-based shit stirring, fast, funny and topical, like Q&A on crack!”, has taken up residence at Giant Dwarf once a month and broadcasts live to air on FBi Radio. Initiated by comedian and broadcaster, Dan Ilic, it started at FBi Social, moved to Laugh Garage and had one off shows at the Opera House and The Factory. This latest show is their 17th.

Ten months ago, Giant Dwarf was a derelict, drab and echoey building. Dan Ilic and manager Nikita Agzarian, along with the Chaser team, committed to taking on the space and restoring it to its original state. The large red velvet curtain and retro lounges suggest appropriate decadence and the entrance courtyard is very homely with its bar and burgers. The Chaser team use it as their production house (aptly using their nickname for Andrew Denton, Giant Dwarf), and a whole heap of regular events happen there on a similar rotation to A RATIONAL FEAR.

Last Monday, Ilic and his panel produced a fabulous line-up for A RATIONAL FEAR. With DJ Dylabolical on hand, Alice R Fraser warmed up the audience with her wonderfully inappropriate and risqué jokes. Lewis Hobba, Greg Fleet, James Colley and Hannah May Reilly joined Ilic. What followed was a deliciously irreverent combination of sketch, stand-up, video and – the icing on the cake – an interview with Bob Carr, former Premier of NSW and former Labor foreign minister.

Reilly and Colley (both from FBi radio) and Hobba (from Triple J radio) all performed controversial and clever monologues. Experienced comedian, Greg Fleet, prefers to improvise so he was thrown random topics, which he quickly turned around with his absurdist humour.

Bob Carr was invited onstage and his ‘throne’ was unveiled in the form of a double set of Qantas retro airline chairs, first class of course. Accompanied by his latest autobiography, Carr felt quite at home and rebuffed the panel’s cheeky questions with great ease.

A waiter arrived onstage with refreshments for him – a bottle of Penfolds Grange, which he gracefully refused.

The audience – a full house – were on top of the comedy and never stopped laughing. Carr’s parting gift from the panel in a spirit of irony, was a 4L goon cask, to which he responded afterwards: “Is this considered a lower class of alcohol?”

A RATIONAL FEAR should not be missed. Their next show will be on Tuesday 3rd June, 2014 at the Giant Dwarf, 199 Cleveland Street, Redfern and will run from 8pm to 11pm.

For more information, visit their official website: