Reviews

Seventeen

By Matthew Whittet. Turquoise Theatre. Directed by Susannah Thompson. The Blue Room Studio as part of Summer Nights, Perth, WA. Feb 6-10, 2018

Billed as “Saggy skin, youthful dreams”, Turquoise Theatre’s Seventeen casts actors “over sixty” as teenagers celebrating their emerging adulthood.

Glorious!

By Peter Quilter. Therry Dramatic Society. Arts Theatre, Adelaide. 8-17th February, 2018

Therry’s latest offering, Glorious! pays homage to the surprisingly successful career of the late Florence Foster Jenkins. Playwright Peter Quilter journeys through the later part of her success in the 1940s leading up to her sold-out show at Carnegie Hall.

What makes Jenkins’ story so unique is the enthusiasm and confidence she possessed despite her lack of talent; she is remembered by many as ‘the worst opera singer who ever lived’- or died…pun intended.

Joan

By Lucy J. Skilbeck. Milk Presents in association with Derby Theatre. Directed by Lucy J. Skilbeck. The Round at State Theatre Centre as Part of Summer Nights, Perth WA. Feb 6-10, 2018

Joan, presented by Milk Presents in association with Derby Theatre, is a simply stunning piece of theatre. A unique take on the story of Joan of Arc, this solo performance, with music, keeps its audience rapt, with its energy, ferocity and joie de vivre.

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee

Music and Lyrics by William Finn, book by Rachel Sheinkin. Conceived by Rebecca Feldman, with additional material by Jay Reiss. Gosford Musical Society. Director: Ruth Tiffen. Choreographer: Carolyn McNamara. Musical Director Ben Ross. Don Craig Room, Laycock Street Theatre. Feb 9-17, 2018

Unwieldy. Def: Awkward and cumbersome. To use in a sentence: “Unwieldy Is one of those words that is not only hard to spell, it also is the perfect word to describe the title of this deceptively cutesy-sounding play”.

This is the first viewing of this show for this reviewer, but it has been on the list for quite some time, due to the cult status it has attained in recent years. The show’s glowing reputation is totally justified - it’s a deliciously sharp and relatable satire. Spoiler alert regarding the plot: it’s about a spelling bee!

Amazing Grace

Manilla Street Productions. Creator / Director: Karen Jemison. Musical Director: Luke Hunter. Choreographers: Jeanne Sorich/Lucinda Williams. National Theatre, St Kilda. February 9 - 11, 2018.

Sometimes it pays to read the fine print. Three music theatre stars and a large ensemble. Should be a great night.

It was a calisthenics concert! Not my main line of expertise.

It was amazing!

The Escape Room:- The Speakeasy

Fringe World. Directed by Richard Maritzer. The Pleasure Garden, Russell Square, Northbridge, WA. Jan 27 - Feb 25, 2018

Whether you are Fringe Binging or just having small tastes of Fringe World, having a varied diet is key to having a healthy outlook. Whether your usual tastes run to theatre, music, cabaret or comedy, I highly recommend spicing up your Fringe experience with a trip to The Escape Room:- The Speakeasy.

What Did You Expect?

Fringe World. The Ellington Jazz Club, Northbridge, WA. Feb 8-11, 2018

What Did You Expect? gives you songs exactly as you would not expect. With a change of the genre, the style or the subtext, favourite tunes are turned on their head in unexpected ways.

Visiting Hours

By John Harrison, Constantine Costi and Michael Costi. bAKEHOUSE. KXT - Kings Cross Theatre. February 7 - 17, 2018.

Through dimly lit stairways and passages chillingly lined with black plastic, groups of twenty triaged ‘patients’ are led into the dreamy, delusionary miasma and hazy treatment wards of an off-the-grid sanatorium. Here, led by an obsessive clinician known only as The Doctor, a team of eccentric medical recruits ghoulishly prepare to share some unconventional therapies based on bizarre research and questionable experiments.

No Surrender

By Mic Smith. La Mama Theatre, Carlton, Vic. February 7 - 18, 2018

No Surrender is a new play about a triple poaching in South Africa.  It tells the story of an anthropomorphic Rhinoceros named Roger (Kevin Summers).  Roger has had his horn hacked off during a full moon. A  “poachers moon”, when rhinos are hunted down by the shadows they cast in the moonlight. Roger is bloody, bruised and confused when he discovers his brother Ralph and daughter Rhonda are lying dead beside him.

My Friend Miss Flint

By Donald Churchill and Peter Yeldham. Tea Tree Players (SA). February 7 - 17, 2018

Tea Tree Players have been tailoring live community theatre to their loyal audiences since 1976 and My Friend Miss Flint, the first of this year’s offerings, is no exception.

Premiering in 1984, My Friend Miss Flint is an often performed, typical British comedy. However, times have changed and references to “fat, unattractive women” are unnecessary and could be cut without affecting the play’s integrity.

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