Reviews

Dedications

By Anthony Harkin. Starring John O’Hara. Hayes Theatre Co as part of Cabaret Season 2015. June 9 & 10, 2015

Just met somebody? Out of love, or in the best relationship of your life? Well thankfully, in the name of the father, the love struck son and the divorce culprit, The Love God is here to help. 

Anthony Harkin’s cabaret Dedications strings together multiple love stories and heartaches via Richard Mercer’s radio program Love Song Dedications. Six characters who find themselves in and out of love call in and request a song to be shared to the nation as a means to share their story. 

Women on the Verge

Based on 8 Monologues for Women by Dario Fo and Franca Rame. La Mama Courthouse, Carlton. June 17- 21, 2015.

Daring to tinker with the work of theatrical giants such as Dario Fo and Franca Rame is a courageous enterprise. Capturing the poignancy and the comic artistry of these two iconic figures is a test of skill for any theatre professional. This production employs the talent of Latin American dance and music while evoking shades of Almodóvar’s irreverent female protagonists.

It’s Just Sex

By Jeff Gould. The Adelaide Repertory Theatre. Arts Theatre, Adelaide. June 18 – 27, 2015

A thought-provoking play that looks at boundaries, trust and monogamy between three married couples. When friendships become more intimate it sets off a myriad of topics all centering on the subject of sex. Director Erik Strauts pushes the boundaries in this tale. Peppered with many one liners and jaw dropping encounters, this production makes for a lively night at the theatre.

Melbourne Cabaret Festival

Gala Opening. Alex Theatre, St Kilda. June 18, 2015

Oh what a shambles! Not so much the acts themselves, but the so called Gala (I think they left the “H” off the end of that word) Opening. I have LOVED the previous Galas…. Everything from Sammy J to Mary Wilson in properly equipped and professionally run venues; but this was like visiting your favourite gourmet restaurant only to be told the award winning chef had left and the food was prepared in a microwave.

Retro Futurismus

Maude Davey, Anni Davey, Anna Lumb & Gabi Barton, with special guests. fortyfivedownstairs | 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne. 10 – 28 June 2015

Maude and Annie Davey are legends and just about everything they do is worth catching and Retro Futurismus is no exception. 

Lady Rizo - Unescorted

Adelaide Cabaret Festival. Space Theatre, Adelaide Festival Centre. 17-19 June, 2015.

Sometimes a performer will take your breath away with the manner in which they joyfully push against the conventional boundaries of cabaret tradition. Lady Rizo is just this kind of exhilarating fresh-air blast, and you owe it to yourselves to put her name at the top of your list.

27 Club

By Joshua Tyler and Tahli Corin. Adelaide Cabaret Festival. Dunstan Playhouse. JJune 17 – 19, 2015.

It is not unusual to celebrate the works of musicians that have passed, but what sets this show apart from the rest is that it concentrates on those performers who met their maker at the young age of 27. It begs you to look for a connection, to wonder if there was a greater force or whether quite simply it was a bunch of incredibly talented individuals who each struggled with reality and sought comfort and escape that ultimately led to their deaths.

Love and Information

By Caryl Churchill. Directed by Kip Williams. Malthouse Theatre. 12th June – 4th July, 2015

Just when you thought you had seen all theatre has to offer and it was safe to go back in the water, along comes a shark by the name of Churchill to turn all your pre-conceptions upside down.

Love and Information is a conceit – and is, in almost equal parts, infuriating and exhilarating. It arrogantly throws out everything we know about theatre, and the nature of drama and linear narrative, and replaces it with a gigantic Haiku where the sum is greater than the combined value of the words….and there are words a-plenty.

MDMA: Modern Day Maiden Aunt

By Geraldine Quinn. Hayes Theatre Co. June 16 & 17, 2015.

Geraldine Quinn hits the stage running in this bright, fast-moving expose on being single, unmarried and …. how can she possibly cope? … childless! Her show is witty, close to the bone, and very carefully scripted, rehearsed and timed. It mixes stand up comedy and raunchy, well-written songs in a show that has real personal appeal.

Spamalot

Book and Lyrics By Eric Idle. Music by John Du Prez. Directed by Jane Court. MLOC. Phoenix Theatre Elwood. June 12 – 20, 2015

I must admit I have avoided Spamalot in the past, but I’m glad I took the plunge this time around. The show is a paradox. On the one hand being a 14 time Tony nominee and a Broadway hit, based on the work of one of the most iconic comedy groups in history; and conversely being a gigantic urine extractor full of old gags and corny music which surely has something to offend everyone (though I applaud its delicious political incorrectness). Oh, there is one other thing I should mention…it is abso-freaking-lutely hilarious.

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