Reviews

Kryptonite

By Sue Smith. Sydney Theatre Company and State Theatre Company of South Australia. Wharf 1 Theatre, Sydney. Director: Geordie Brookman. 11 September – 18 October 2014.

We all know — don’t we? — that Superman emigrated from the planet Krypton and that the only substance that can render him helpless is a chunk of kryptonite. Sue Smith certainly hopes we know this superheroic fact, for otherwise the title of her terrific new two-hander will be meaningless.

The metaphorical kryptonite examined here is the essential Chineseness that Smith’s heroine Lian retains after years of being legally Australian. And her boardshorts-wearing hero Dylan is always and incontrovertibly from Planet Oz.

Laughter on the 23rd Floor

By Neil Simon. Directed by Kate Cherry. Heath Ledger Theatre, State Theatre Centre of WA, Perth. 6-21 Sep 2014

Laughter on the 23rd Flooris excellent quality theatre, beautifully produced and great fun to watch.

First impressions come from Lauren Ross' consciously unconsciously glamorous New York office set - which is simply beautiful, perfectly constructed and establishes a distinct style. The designer's costumes are also wonderful - beautifully selected and an excellent depiction of characters and the era.

Amadeus

By Peter Shaffer. Directed by Bruce Akers. Heidelberg Theatre Company. 11th-27th September, 2014.

It could be said that Peter Shaffer is one of the 20th Century’s greatest playwrights and Amadeus is already a “classic” play. Certainly the role of Salieri is one of the showiest and most compelling roles since Shakespeare’s time, and it’s also one of the most gruelling.

Form Dance Projects: Double Bill

Lennox Theatres, Riverside Theatres, Parramatta. September 11 – 13, 2014

In this program two creative teams exemplify how contemporary dance reaches beyond story telling to social comment, and how the arts are being combined and juxtaposed in unusual and imaginative ways.

Miranda Wheen and Matt Cornell presentSafe Hands andBetween Two and Zero on a black-floored empty stage.

The King and I

By Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II. Opera Australia / John Frost. Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House. September 7 – November 1, 2014

There must have been a mix up at the box office because of instead of sitting in the clouds somehow we ended up in what felt like the Governor’s seats – dead centre five rows from the front. Malcolm Turnbull, in the seat behind, gave me a tip on how to conduct a regal wave.

Europe

By Michael Gow. Slip of the Tongue. Seymour Centre (NSW). September 10 – 21, 2014

For a play that made its debut in 1987 Michael Gow's Europe is remarkably current. Really not a lot has changed in terms of the Australian desire to pursue global culture overseas, particularly in Europe, rather than explore what's on offer domestically. I'm sure each you have plenty of friends on Facebook who are sharing their snaps right now.

Cyrano De Bergerac

By Edmond Rostand. New Farm Nash Theatre Inc. (Qld). 13 September – 4 October 2014

Edmond Rostand’s neo-Romantic play about lost love (premiere1897), provided plot structure for several later plays and movies. Ever since Cyrano has become the quintessential lover who discovers his own deep love while acting as an intermediary for a friend, then loses his own love as a result.

The Phantom of the Opera

Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber. Lyrics: Charles Hart. Book: Richard Stilgoe & Andrew Lloyd Webber. Ipswich Musical Theatre Company. Director: Sherryl-Lee Secomb. Musical Director: Brenda Ryan. Choreographer: Desney Toia-Sinapati. Ipswich Civic Centre. 12-20 September 2014

Sherryl-Ann Secomb’s production of The Phantom of the Opera for Ipswich Musical Theatre was musically solid, spectacular to look at, and highly melodramatic.

Star of the performance was Lauren Lee Innis-Youren as Christine. With a bright and clear soprano she effortlessly handled the demanding score with ease and was particularly pleasing on “Wishing you were Somehow Here Again.”

Children of the Sun

By Maxim Gorky, in a new version by Andrew Upton. Sydney Theatre Company. Drama Theatre, Sydney Opera House. 8 September - 25 October, 2014

Andrew Upton’s very modern adaptation of Maxim Gorky’s Children of the Sun gives life to a 1905 Russian middle class family on brink of revolutionary catastrophe and yet also to any family today of indulged adults blind to their futures in this century. 

LOVEBiTES

By Peter Rutherford and James Millar. Wooden Horse Productions. Hayes Theatre Co, Potts Point (NSW). September 10 – October 5, 2014.

Many reasons made me love this LOVEBiTES, a brand new staging of an entertaining Off-Broadway style Australian musical.

To keep up with the latest news and reviews at Stage Whispers, click here to like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.