Roommates: The Musical.

Written & performed by Jude Perl. Melbourne International Comedy Festival. The Coopers Malthouse, Bagging Room. 11-16 & 18-23 April 2017.

It will be difficult to review this show with its turning into gush.  It’s terrific.  On one level, it’s simple and unadorned.

The Mozart Faction

By Kate Rice. Directed by Siobhan O’Gara. Melville Theatre, WA. April 8-22, 2017

The Mozart Faction made its professional premiere in Perth ten years ago. Written by Kate Rice, who lived for some time in Perth, it features a community choir who find themselves held at gunpoint, during their rehearsal.

First Crack

Presented by Leaky Bucket. Performers: Darcy Fleming, Matt McCartney and Prue Blake. Melbourne International Comedy Festival at The Last Jar. 11th to 23rd April 2017

Darcy Fleming, Matt McCartney and Prue Blake are the bright, up and coming trio that makes up the   comedy group ‘Leaky Bucket’ which they formed in 2016.  Each with a comedy background in improvisation, sketch, theatre and stand up, they present their show First Crack at MICF 2017.


Freak Party. Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Note New Venue and dates: Trades Hall - Old Council Chambers: 15-21 Apr 2017 @ 9:30pm (8:30 Sun), No Wednesday

Down a lane, up several flights of worn stairs into a tiny “theatre” created with black masking attached to walls with gaffer tape and clothes pegs – this must be a Melbourne Comedy Festival gig!

Comedy duo Freak Party (Dan Pavatich andJustin Porter) transport us from 2017 to the year 2056, and a world unrecognizable due to the nuclear fallout from a 2017 “Trump” war.

Blake Everett is King of Nothing

Written & performed by Blake Everett. Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Tasma Terrace, 6 Parliament Place, Melbourne. 10-13 & 18-22 April 2017

Blake Everett is a shaggy, boofy guy in a Hawaiian shirt.  He opens his show with a jaunty, cocky song, ‘I’m Better Than You’.  He might be King of Nothing, but he’s better than us because he’s doing what he loves: he’s a comedian. 

Richard 3

By William Shakespeare. Bell Shakespeare. Directed by Peter Evans. Canberra Theatre, 6 – 15 April, 2017 and Arts Centre Melbourne, 20 April – 7 May.

Kate Mulvany clearly relishes playing Richard 3.  Sharing some of his physical limitations which she’s able to use to impressive effect, she has an affection for this maligned villain. Her Richard is impish, clever, bitter, murderous with an infectious giggle, and emphatically, convincingly masculine. There’s something of Cabaret’s Emcee to him, a consummate but self-conscious performer. Her brilliant portrayal would make this production captivating, even without the lavish set, attention to detail and excellent cast.


Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Coopers Malthouse. Mar 30 – April 22, 2017

SOAP’s international reputation is completely deserved.  The capacity audience at the Malthouse were greeted with a set of seemingly empty claw-footed bathtubs arrayed on different levels….and the audience was immediately captured as performers arose from the tubs and danced their way through a bath-time routine, with accompaniment from an operatic soprano – the ultimate singer in the shower! 

Ellie, Abbie (& Ellie’s Dead Aunt).

By Monica Zanetti. Feet First Ventures & The Depot Theatre. March 28 – April 9, 2017

A charming light hearted romantic comedy written and directed by Monica Zanetti.

Zanetti’s story is of a teenage girl Ellie (Sophie Hawkshaw) coming to terms with her sexuality and her desire to ask her friend Abbie (Geraldine Viswanathan) as her date to the school formal, prompted by her dead aunt (Monica Zanetti), whom only Ellie can see. With Meagan Caratti playing her bewildered mother and Margi de Ferranti playing a dual role of Patty and Ellie’s teacher. A funny light hearted delight at The Depot Theatre. Well directed, with an excellent ensemble cast.

Minefields and Miniskirts

Written by Siobhan McHugh: Adapted by Terence O’Connell. Directed by Bronwyn Morrow, Arts Theatre, Brisbane. April 8 – April 29, 2017.

The Vietnam War remains in our memories for that generation and this play gives another perspective on what occurred in the battle zone and back in Australia. Unfortunately many remember the reception the returning soldiers received without actually understanding what horrors most of them had gone through in the conflict zone. Even more disturbing is the lack of understanding of the roles women played in Vietnam.

Shirley Gnome - Taking it up the Notch

Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Butterfly Club. April 3 – 16, 2017

Arriving on stage in a frilled, sequined and bedazzled country-singer-manqué creation, complete with sequined hat, Canadian cabaret comedian Shirley Gnome captured her audience in a heartbeat opening with a song about, well, taking things up the notch. 

She breathlessly shared the news about her recent signing to the largest independent record label in Canada, vowing to spend the advance by coming to Australia, before the record label “realised what it was they had bought”.

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