Tag Archives: Matthew Whittet

JESUS WANTS ME FOR A SUNBEAM : UPSTAIRS @ BELVOIR STREET

The subject of Steve Rodgers play, adapted from the novel by Peter Goldsworthy, is not Jesus. The subject is family, how devoted we are to it and how we will give everything to it.

Linda and Rick Pollard are a happy couple. They have two children, Ben and the younger child, Wol. Life is going smoothly.

The couple try and protect Ben and Wol from the harsher realities of life. They want them to be ‘bathed’ in love. They even banish the tv from their house as an unnecessary distraction from .the peaceful environment they are determined to live in.

Then one day, their girl Wol takes ill. They take her to the Doctor. The Doc organises a battery of tests. The results come back. Wol has leukaemia.

The perfect Pollard family world is rocked. The family goes into damage control. It isn’t helped when, in one scene, Wol completely ‘loses it’ and  screams out that she doesn’t want to be alone, she doesn’t want to die.

Darren Yap very sensitively directs this production and wins good performances from his cast. Matthew Whittet plays the idealistic  Nick. Liam Nunan is Ben who just wants to see his sister get better. Grace Truman gives a touching performance as Wol.

Valerie Bader doubles up as Grandma and Doctor Eve. Mark Lee plays Grandpa and the local priest.

My performance of the night was Emma Jackson’s as the very gritty, earthy mother, Linda.

Emma Vine’s compact set and costume design worked well as did  Max Lambert’s soundscape, underscoring the action.

A touching, sensitively wrought drama,  JESUS WANTS ME FOR A SUNBEAM plays upstairs at Belvoir Street Theatre, 25 Belvoir Street, Surry Hills until Sunday 8th March, 2020.

Featured image : Matthew Whittet and Emma Jackson in ‘Jesus wants me for a sunbeam’. Pic by Brett Boardman.

 

 

 

 

 

 

MARY STUART : A POWERFUL ELIZABETHAN DRAMA

All the good scriptwriting theory says  that conflict is always at the heart of every good drama. Let it be said that there was plenty of conflict and heat in this production. This play explores one of history’s great rivalries. A battle of wits, blood and broken hearts, reinvented for the stage – the iconic tale of Mary, Queen of Scots and Elizabeth 1 of England.

Following an uprising, Mary has fled Scotland, gone to England and has been imprisoned by her cousin, Queen Elizabeth. The Queen her Imprisoned because Mary is younger, more beloved, and has her own claim to the throne.

The play starts after Mary has been languishing in prison for some 19 years and has now been found guilty of treason. She is told that the Queen can now sign a warrant for her execution.   Continue reading MARY STUART : A POWERFUL ELIZABETHAN DRAMA

MATTHEW WHITTET’S ‘GIRL ASLEEP’ @ BELVOIR STREET

Greta Driscoll  (played by Ellen Steele) is about to turn fifteen in 1970s Australian suburbia, and without any consultation, her controlling parents have organised for the entire school to attend her fifteenth birthday party. Greta falls asleep in her bedroom, and we experience her vivid dreams, as a magnificent costumed fantasy with spellbinding visuals.

Continue reading MATTHEW WHITTET’S ‘GIRL ASLEEP’ @ BELVOIR STREET