By Ronald Harwood. Directed by Terry Hackett. KADS Theatre, Kalamunda, WA. 13 Nov - 5 Dec 2015

Quartet is set in a home for retired opera singers and at times feels a little like a cross between Sex and the City and The Golden Girls with its sexy and funny themes, interspersed with operatic music.

The Listies Ruin Xmas

Creator/ Performers: Richard Higgins and Matthew Kelly. Set and Costume Design Consultant: Marg Horwell. Lighting Designer: Amelia Lever-Davidson. Beckett Theatre, Malthouse: 25 November to 13 December, 2015

The Listies are presenting a lovely fresh and very engaging Christmas show for everyone, except perhaps ‘old grumps’.  No, seriously, it is a very funny, joyful, silly and heartwarming show for everyone.  Grown-ups of all ages and kids can have heaps of fun and laughs together.

This show continues the tradition of Malthouse Theatre putting on a children’s show every year.

Moonlight and Magnolias

By Ron Hutchison. Directed by Loretta Bishop. 1812 Theatre, Upper Ferntree Gully (Vic). Nov 19 – Dec 12, 2015

There can’t be anyone who doesn’t know of the blockbuster movie “Gone With The Wind”, particularly among theatre-lovers. 1812 ends its 2015 season with a blockbuster production of its own. Ron Hutchison’s play is a farce – and the events it is based on (in Ben Hecht’s autobiography) are farcical in themselves. Hecht was a legendary screenwriter of the 30s, 40s, and 50s….the Golden Age of Hollywood. When David O.

Social Climbers

By Roger Hall. Gold Coast Little Theatre, Southport. Director: Helen Maden. Nov 21- Dec 12, 2015

What do you get when you take 6 women (in varying stages of their personal journeys), an isolated bush hut, alcohol and 4 days at the mercy of the elements and wild life? A hilarious piece of theatre!

Helen Maden has taken this play and talented cast and created a memorable piece of theatrical magic. The séance scene (pictured) is a fine example.

The ensemble cast bounce of each other (and everything that they bump into) with flare and take the audience along for the experience.

The Nun and the Highwayman

By Simon Farley. La Mama, EXPLORATIONS, 205 Faraday Street, 26, 27 & 28 November, 2015

This is an intriguing premise for a play and allows for a variety of religious, moral, ethical and political themes to be explored. Farley describes it as a weird play but the encounter he imagines is not unlike that experienced by the soldier John McBurney (Clint Eastwood) in the film The Beguiled (Seigel 1971). Rescued by his enemy McBurney is forced to use his charm and wits to survive his ordeal and, in doing so, in some ways discovers the depths of his depravity.

The Medea Project

A collaboration by Perri Cummings (director), Carol Cumming (filmmaker), Kristina Benton, Sally McLean & Hannah Gott (performers). Spark Productions, Auspicious Arts. Brunswick Arts Space (VIC). 25-28 November 2015.

On a huge screen, across the whole upstage wall of the tiny Brunswick Arts Space, twenty women – wildly different in life experience, attitude, age, ethnicity, profession and appearance – answer questions about life, work, happiness, love and children.  This is filmmaker Carol Cumming’s contribution to the piece.  The women are (mostly) unself-conscious, engaging and ponder the questions seriously.

When I Grow Up

Writer/Performer: Anne Gasko. The Butterfly Club. Nov 25 – 29, 2015.

Anne Gasko is a music theatre graduate branching out into Cabaret, and this was her first venture into writing and performing her own show.  A big ask and a big task.

It dealt with the frustrations of childhood, which she expected to dissipate when she grew up. However, as an adult, she finds life is not what she was expecting. She has the freedom to make choices, but these choices have consequences.

It was very well written and there was no hesitation in her delivery. Her timing was excellent.

Big River

Book by William Hauptman. Music and Lyrics Roger Miller. Players Theatre, Ballina. Director/Musical Director: Paul Belsham. Nov 13 – Dec 5, 2015

In reviving Big River, Ballina has presented a seldom seen musical and what a joy it is.

Paul’s staging of the story based on Mark Twain’s loveable characters including Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer, is full of wit interwoven with Roger Miller’s music, a fabulous set including the raft “floating” down the mighty Mississippi is certainly a force to be reckoned with: so much so it has received 3 short list nomination’s for this years Gold Coast Area Theatre Awards to be announced next month.

Don’t Dress for Dinner

By Marc Camoletti. Directed by Walter Learning. Canberra REP, Theatre 3, Acton, Canberra ACT. Nov 19 – Dec 5, 2015

Don’t Dress for Dinner is a fast and funny farce, and an amusing evening of mind-twisting fibs, truth entanglements and wit.  It is set in a renovated farmhouse in France, where Bernard the philandering husband is sending his wife Jacqueline to her mother’s house for the weekend. His plans are messed up by the early arrival of Robert, his friend, as well as the arrival of Suzy the caterer, and Jacqueline changing her plans.

The Chain Bridge

By Tom Davis. Directed by Caroline Stacey. The Street Theatre, Canberra. 21–29 November 2015.

Steadily unravelling the secrets that have lain in wait for up to 54 years in the memories of three survivors of World War II, the 1956 Hungarian Uprising, and escape from war-sundered Budapest for eventual arrival in Melbourne, this multidimensional piece reveals the desperate responses that desperate circumstances wrought of good people simply trying to get by.  And it skilfully sets about revealing the way in which those living with these memories of loss and compromise can contain complexities of gentleness and vehemence, of perspicuity and blindness, of deep humanity an

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