Tequila Mockingbird

Tequila Mockingbird
By Nelle Lee et al. Queensland Performing Arts Centre and Shake & Stir’s Première Production. Cremorne Theatre. 21 Aug – 7 Sept, 2013

Shake and Stir do it again – a fifth consecutive popular hit!

Inspired by Harper Lee’s classic novel, the six cast members and experienced director of new works, Michael Futcher, workshopped and rehearsed Nelle Lee’s draft script.

The product of their joint effort is a ninety-minute, dense and engaging, distinctly Australian outback play that challenges audience members to confront their own attitudes to racism, discrimination and the effect of alcohol on drinkers’ responses in turbulent situations. The actors bring lightness, humanity and much comedy to the dark scenario and its characters.

The single-father lawyer is still mainstay of the action. Bryan Probets revels as Richard, man of integrity, and close friend of the accused, Sameer, an Indian doctor, newly-arrived in town. Shannon Haegler plays him as a personable, confident young man who expected he might attract snide remarks and discrimination because of recent publicity about Indian student bashings.

All six actors in this ensemble production are stars. Barbara Lowing expertly portrays three different females typical of country towns – pub manager, better class mum and a battler mum. Ross Balbuziente and Nick Skubij each double young male parts with aplomb, and Nelle Lee doubles as a local wild child and later as the battered girlfriend who becomes embroiled in the major crisis with the doctor.

The company again employed the creative trio of Josh McIntosh (design), Jason Glenwright (lighting) and Guy Webster (sound) to great effect.

Jay McKee

Photographer: Dylan Evans

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