And they’re racing…
The sport of racing is such an indelible, iconic part of Australian culture. There are few things more archetypal Aussie male than a guy punting on the races- sitting in the living room, going through the racing guide, the radio on , a bottle of VB close by….
It’s a good life when you are good at picking winners. It’s not so great when you blow a lot of your cash and leave the family short….
Like patriarch Errol Sinclair does in Mary Rachel Brown’s play THE DAPTO CHASER. He has been a perennial and mainly luckless gambler on the greyhounds on his local Dapto track. One grayish afternoon he has a heart attack and dies. His son Jimmy finds him dead in his favourite chair. Jimmy and his brother get together and find out that they are in dire straits. There isn’t enough money in the family kitty to pay for a proper burial. The play’s journey, in the main, is about their struggles to get the funds together to give their Dad a proper send off.
Out of this set-up local playwright Mary Rachel Brown has written a well crafted struggle street story, featuring a quartet of characters, that is filled with heart, colour and light touches. Within the intimate Stables theatre space director Glynn Nicholas gives it a darn good first production.
Richard Sydenham and Noel Hodda make the most of the two strongest parts.
Richard Sydenham gives a very physical, compelling performance as the edgy, driven larrakin, Cess. The physicality is just right- the tone of voice…the walk…the energy….
Noel Hodda gives a well realised performance as the creepy, spiteful local stand-over man/racing track identity Arnold who Cess seeks out for financial help.
A very fine actor for a long time, Danny Adcock has given some of his best performances at the Stables theatre, most memorably in the Louie Nowra trilogy about the Boyle family, and he continues in this tradition with his solid performance as the father.
Jamie Oxenbould, who has done some great work over the years at the Ensemble theatre, a very funny, quirky piece called The Spear Carrier comes to mind, is in fine form as the younger, saner, more reasonable brother, Jimmy.
Nicholas’ creative band- Georgia Hopkins on set and costumes, Toby Knyvett on lights and Daryl Wallis on sound- create a resonant, authentic world for the quartet to work in.
Chase this show down. You are on to a winner. An Apocalypse Theatre Company and Griffin Independent production, THE DAPTO CHASER is playing the Stables Theatre until Saturday 25th July.