Reviews

As You Like It

By William Shakespeare. Bell Shakespeare. Directed by Peter Evans. The Playhouse, Canberra Theatre. 7 – 18 April 2015 and touring.

Love makes fools of us, according to this visually beautiful, musically stunning and uproariously funny take. Peter Evans’ As You Like It brings out all the caustic wit and wry observation in the text, and then some, and places it in a nostalgic dreamscape with a retro feel.

The Anzac Project

Dear Mum and Dad by Geoffrey Atherden and Light Begins to Fade by Vanessa Bates. Ensemble Theatre. 2nd April-10th May 2015

These two one-act plays were commissioned by the Ensemble Theatre to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Australia New Zealand Army Corps first national military action, on 25th April 1915, landing onto what is now known as ANZAC Cove in the Gallipoli peninsula on the Turkish coast. The big picture plan was to interupt the German oil supply and draw enemy troops away from Europe. The invasion was a disaster.

Cool 2B Kind: A 'Cult' Comedy

Ferry Productions. Melbourne International Comedy Festival. The Butterfly Club, Carson Place off Little Collins St, Melbourne. April 8 – 12, 2015

As “semi-profesional Christian edutainers” Jeremy and Fay are sharing their message of God’s love with the year 9 class of a suburban high school. These two members of the Ministry of Pastor GregTM share their evangelical messages  in a show which incorporates all the clichéd moves from a 1970’s Theatre in Education team, a casio keyboard, powerpoint presentation, cyber robots, a camel, catchy songs and cool dancing.  What Year 9 student could resist their message!

A Hip Hikers Guide To The Galaxy

Backwards Anorak. Melbourne International Comedy Festival. The Butterfly Club, 5 Carson Place (off Lt Collins St) Melbourne

Prince Harian and his underling Minge have landed on Earth from another world. We have one hour to find the owner of an ethereal voice as a mate for the Prince. While waiting for someone else to find to find his dream girl the Prince spends the hour bullying and physically assaulting Minge, encouraged by the musicians on stage (and the laughter of their friends in the audience). Then the Prince discovers Minge is the girl of his dreams and beds her; they have a child and he continues to bully and belittle her. The end. 

Fawlty Towers: The Dining Experience

The Aegean, 19 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy, Melbourne. Melbourne International Comedy Festival. 7-19 April 2015

Based on the much repeated television show of the same name this dinner show has been doing the rounds internationally since its inception in Queensland in 1997. In this live performance the audience finds themselves in a real restaurant being welcomed by Basil, Sybil and the hapless Manuel.

Killing Jeremy

By Bridgette Burton. Swampfox Theatre. Directed by John Bishop. The Bakery, 1812 Theatre. 9th April to 2nd May, 2015.

Community Theatre is alive and extremely well in the outer suburbs. But where the 1812 Theatre in Upper Ferntree Gully uses it’s main theatre, The Lowe Auditorium, for comic crowd pleasers or who-dunnits for the mainly over-sixties, its alter ego…The Bakery… specialises in newer works with contemporary edge aimed at audiences who like to think with their drama. It’s a brave choice to run both kinds of theatre side by side.

Irving Berlin: Songs In The Key Of Black

Written by Nicholas Christo. Starring Lucy Maunder with Isaac Hayward on Piano. Hayes Theatre Co. April 7 – 12, 2015.

Don’t miss Lucy Maunder’s joyous celebration of the Irving Berlin songbook, as this musical theatre songstress returns to Sydney to present her successful cabaret at the Hayes for the first time.

One of our finest young musical theatre stars, Lucy stamps herself as a versatile cabaret song stylist, warm and natural, in this whirlwind, song-packed hour of songs from one of the greats of the Great American Songbook.

Endgame

By Samuel Beckett. Sydney Theatre Company. Roslyn Packer Theatre Walsh Bay (formerly Sydney Theatre). March 31 – May 9, 2015

The state companies of Melbourne and Sydney are both currently staging Samuel Beckett’s Endgame, both no doubt careful not to counter his notoriously prescriptive executors.  

The Bugalugs Bum Thief

A monkey baa production. Adapted from the novel by Tim Winton by Sanda Eldridge, Eva di Cesare and Tim McGarry. Directed by John Saunders. Lend Lease Darling Quarter Theatre. April 7 – 24, 2015

This is another funny adaptation by the clever folk from monkey baa and is great holiday entertainment for 4-10 year olds. It’s colourful and fast moving and just long enough to keep the younger members of the audience entertained. As is usual with monkey baa’s productions, there are some craft activities to engage the children in the foyer before the show – and the Darling Quarter Theatre itself is ideal for young audiences because the angle of the rake means even little kids can see the whole stage.

Moominpappa at Sea

Directed by Michael Barlow. Spare Parts Puppet Theatre, Fremantle, WA. April 4-18, 2015

Spare Parts' April school holidays production is based on the Moomin books by Finnish writer Tove Jansson and is a gentle solo performance by Michael Barlow.

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