Tag Archives: Scott Parker

URZA & THE SONG IN THE DARK: BEWILDERING BEAUTY, YOUNG OR OLD

Production Images: Robert Catto

URZA AND THE SONG IN THE DARK is exactly what I always expect from Matriark Theatre – Artfully analogue, handmade, bespoke excellence in design and execution.   It’s a wonderful production which is bursting with humanist joy, the visualization of the invisible and the evocation of sung landscapes of soul.  Designed for children, this detailed yet easily portable production, engages young and old with puppetry, shadow work and original music combined a story of myth,  meaning and much mirth.

The spirit of the hill, the song spirit, is broken and the stones of its shadows are all that is left.    The humans mine and crush the stones for their power to light the town, with no thought to their real meaning or purpose.  Urza is one of the best miners at Tickett’s factory and she has ambitions to be ‘Chief Digger’ until her world is shaken and she finds herself led by a spirit boy who has chosen her for an earth shattering task. She is lost in an underground place that is very, very mysterious,   Urza crawl and fly as she experiences many adventures on her way to loving the earth and all the song stones that make it special. Continue reading URZA & THE SONG IN THE DARK: BEWILDERING BEAUTY, YOUNG OR OLD

MATRIARK THEATRE PRESENTS GODFACE @ 107 PROJECTS Inc REDFERN

Above- Jesse Northam with puppet. Featured- Murray Lambert and Sam Flack. Photos by Alinta Haydock-Burton.
Above- Jesse Northam with puppet. Featured- Murray Lambert and Sam Flack. Photos by Alinta Haydock-Burton.

The Holy City of Godface : built by gods, ruled by gods, populated by gods.

Seventy minutes, the length of this play, may not seem like a long time to spend on stage, but for the five cast members of

GODFACE, it must have seemed like an eternity. Not only do they have to play many human characters, they must also bring a myriad of puppet characters to life. The four male actors who work the puppets have to embody several different animals – supplying the voices while controlling their entire body movements. Continue reading MATRIARK THEATRE PRESENTS GODFACE @ 107 PROJECTS Inc REDFERN

Godface @ The Old 505 Theatre

As part of Experimental Fleshworks at Old 505.

What the Hell was that? As my friend and I reeled down the 5 flights of stairs from the Old 505 theatre we just kept repeating, what the hell was that? I loved it but what the Hell was it? It was really really good but what in the name of all the Gods was it? By the time we hit the street we had worked it out. It was brilliant, funny, emotional, experiential physical theatre beyond definition.

In a weird place, deserted and formless we meet a mortal, Pippa, who is seduced into running for the elected position of God in a secluded wasteland city called GODFACE. At first reticent, the deal is sealed when immortality is dangled like dust flutters before her. Her main rival is Swansee, who will erode Pippa’s ideals enough that she will bury her real self. Will the true Pippa survive to rise Godlike from the floor? Continue reading Godface @ The Old 505 Theatre

HALFWORLD

Emily McGowan, Josh Hampson and Thomas Albert in HALFWORLD
Emily McGowan, Josh Hampson and Thomas Albert in HALFWORLD

The Matriark Theatre Company travels well known terrain with its second work, a children’s play called HalfWorld, written by Robert den Englesman and directed by Scott Parker, which is still currently at a workshop stage.

Den Engelsman’s play fits into the quest/fantasy genre. Josh Hampson plays the protagonist Mr Boy who starts on a quest to find his lost twin brother. As per Joseph Campbell’s ‘Hero of a Thousand Faces’ template, our young hero has to enter into a special world, in the case of this play it is called the ‘HalfWorld’.

The centerpiece of this HalfWorld is a huge tent/fortress made of blankets, designed by Aleisa Jelbart, which magically envelopes both the players and the whole of the audience. The kids loved the excitement of it, being ‘wrapped’ in this outlandish cocoon.

In this HalfWorld Mr Boy encounters plenty of quirky allies and enemies. Amongst his allies is Oph, played by the playwright himself, the friendly presence of Admiral John, played by the director, and the Moon who watches over him, played by Emily McGowan. Mr Boy’s chief enemy is the irascible Cortman, dressed in one of the most colourful costumes that I have yet seen, who works for a detective agency and is out to grab him before he gets to find his twin.

My only reservation was this fun piece of theatre as it stands is that it needs a stronger third Act/ denouement. As the production currently stands, the time in the magical Special HalfWorld is where the play is the strongest, and the piece is in need of a stronger resolution. I am sure that the Company will work on this aspect as they prepare for the show’s first fully fledged production.

Matriark Theatre Company’s production of HalfWorld played at the 107 Projects Theatre, 107 Redfern Street, Redfern on August 16, 17 and 18.