Reviews

The Man Who Was Peter Pan

By Allan Knee. Directed by Sarah Christiner. Old Mill Theatre, South Perth, WA. Nov 1-16, 2019

The Australian premiere of The Man Who Was Peter Pan is playing at South Perth’s Old Mill Theatre. This play, which inspired the film Finding Neverland and the musical of the same name, is an artistic retelling of the life of J. M. Barrie and his real life muses and later wards, the Llewelyn Davies boys, who, with Barrie himself are the inspiration for Barrie’s most famous work, Peter Pan.

That Time Everything Went Well And We Were Totally Fine.

Written and performed by Belinda Campbell and Jennifer Piper. Produced by Wit Incorporated. Bluestone Church Arts Space, Footscray. 1-16 November, 2019.

This sketch comedy show has both whimsical and existential qualities. Gerry (Belinda Campbell) and Frankie (Jennifer Piper) are two close friends who are perpetually trapped by their own indecision, fuelled by fear and anxiety. Their limbo existence on a railway platform, aptly named Panic station, is interjected with comedy sketches that parody elements of society that are merely trying to mask the crippling realities that some people must endure, which can lead to mental ill-health.

One for the Pot

By Ray Cooney. Therry Dramatic Society Inc. Arts Theatre, Angas St Adelaide. October 31- November 9, 2019

A rather blustery and wet night swept me to the Arts Theatre in Angas St to see Therry Dramatic Society’s One for the Pot, but somewhat damp and dishevelled spirits were soon lifted by this joyfully silly play.

Like all farces, One for the Pot has a simple plot and the mandatory slamming doors, absolute mayhem, mistaken identities and all-round fun.

Outwitting the Devil

Akram Khan Company. OzAsia Festival. Dunstan Playhouse. November 1-2, 2019

It takes courage, sensitivity and empathy to delve into tragic tales of the past and endeavor to give them a voice again. Akram Khan has a reputation for provocative choreography that pushes the boundaries of not only endurance, but the human spirit. His latest work, Outwitting the Devil is inspired by a fragment of the 12 broken clay tablets, which together make up one of the world’s oldest works of literature, the ancient Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh.

Cephalopod

By Jess Nyanda Moyle. Directed by Joe Lui. The Blue Room Theatre, Perth Cultural Centre, WA. 29 Oct -16 Nov, 2019.

Cephalopods are a class of highly advanced marine animals with tentacles, including octopi, molluscs and squid. Very different to most animals, they are sometimes suggested to be alien in origin.

Since Ali Died

OzAsia Festival. Space Theatre, Adelaide. 1-2 November 2019.

On an empty stage devoid of set and props Omar Musa cuts a lonely figure as he uses the death of his hero Muhammed Ali as an entrée to an hour of storytelling, poetry and rapping.

Musa interweaves sleek threads to create a rich tapestry of stories about life growing up in a country town. Water flows through the piece in the same way that the river runs through Queanbeyan, where Musa grew up.

Writer’s Block

Written by Kellie Silver. Directed by Shane Webb. Presented by Mates Theatre Genesis. Birkdale School of Arts Hall. 18 October – 2 November, 2019

So often comedic plays fail to elicit more than the occasional, ‘Heh’, so it’s a great treat to attend a production in which there are plenty of laugh-out-loud moments. Kellie Silver’s hilarious home-grown play has been served very well by director Shane Webb for community theatre group, Mates Theatre Genesis. Shane has encouraged confident comedic performances from his cast; the witty dialogue supported by fun sight gags such as humorous Brechtian touches woven into the props.

Thigh Gap

By Jamaica Zuanetti. La Mama Courthouse. October 30 – November 10, 2019

If you have a thigh gap, it means you’re slim, taut and terrific, so the new show by Jamaica Zuanetti delves into pop culture to explore body image, beauty and being female in the modern era. The comical absurdist play, directed by Alice Darling, questions female stereotypes and the hazardous consequences of living up to an impossible image.

Much Ado About Nothing

By William Shakespeare. Presented by Artefact Theatre Company, directed by Matthew Cox. Irene Mitchell Studio, St Martins Youth Arts Centre, 28 St Martins Lane, South Yarra. 23 October – 9 November, 2019.

Artefact Theatre Company has produced a lively and exuberant production of this wonderful Shakespeare comedy. The Fitzroy setting is superbly evoked through the set design and through a variety of small and large gestures that capture the unique inner-city culture for which it is famous.

Art

By Yasmina Reza. Verendus Theatrical. Holden Street Theatres. October 30 – November 2, 2019

Art is a fast-paced three hander and it is in the very good hands of three of the best actors in Adelaide in its Verendus Theatrical season. Tracey Walker as Marcia, Alicia Zorkovic as Charlotte and Lyn Wilson as Yvette produced impressive performances and a totally believable story of the ups and downs of friendship.

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