Reviews

Bonnie and Clyde

Music: Frank Wildhorn. Lyrics: Don Black. Book: Ivan Menchell. Beenleigh Theatre Group, Beenleigh, Qld. Director: Kaitlyn Carlton. Musical Director: Julie Whiting 15-30 November 2019

Beenleigh has been in the grip of Frank Wildhorn fever. No sooner had Phoenix Ensemble concluded their production of Jekyll & Hyde, than Beenleigh Theatre Group opened their Bonnie & Clyde. Despite closing quickly on Broadway in 2011, the show has since gone onto international success around the world.

A Christmas Carol

Adapted by Patrick Barlow, from Charles Dickens. Adelaide Repertory Theatre. Arts Theatre Angas St. November 14-23, 2019

What the Dickens is going on at the Arts Theatre you ask? Dozens of people exiting happy and joyful, full of Christmas cheer? It’s the Adelaide Repertory Theatre Company’s absolute (Christmas) cracker of a show A Christmas Carol.

Nell Gwynn

By Jessica Swale. Castle Hill Players. Pavilion Theatre, Castle Hill Showgrounds. Nov 15 – Dec 7, 2019.

Theatre stages see many transformations, but surely there are few more different than that which has occurred at the Pavilion Theatre over the past few weeks. From Anne Frank’s crowded, dimly lit garret in war-time Amsterdam, it is transformed to 17th century England and the reign of the “Merry Monarch”, King Charles II.

The Audition

By Patricia Cornelius, Tes Lyssiotis, Sahra Davoudi, Christos Tsiolkas, Melissa Reeves, Milad Norouzi, Wahibe Moussa. Directed by Irine Vela. Outer Urban Projects & La Mama. La Mama Courthouse, Carlton. 13 – 24 November 2019

Life as an audition.  Please hire me, please give me the role, please like me, please accept me, please see me as I am, please acknowledge my experience, please allow me to enter your country, please recognise me as a genuine refugee… 

Yerma

By Federico García Lorca. Foul Play Theatre. RUMPUS, 100 Sixth St Bowden, Adelaide. November 8 – 23, 2019

Federico García Lorca premiered his controversial play Yerma in 1934 when it mightily challenged the institution of Catholicism and the strict sexual mores of Spanish society.  He describes his work as ‘a tragic poem’ and playwright Holly Brindley certainly maintains a poetic lexicon in this adaptation for Foul Play as part of RUMPUS’ inaugural 2019 Adelaide season.

The Wharf Revue: UNR–DACT–D.

By Jonathan Biggins, Drew Forsythe, and Phillip Scott. Sydney Theatre Company. Directed by Jonathan Biggins and Drew Forsythe. The Playhouse, Canberra. Tuesday 12 November – Saturday 23 November, and touring.

The Wharf Revue is always good for an evening’s laughing appreciation of cleverness at the expense of any politician self-important enough and loud enough to deserve it and one or two others who will forever remain engraved upon our memories, and it has returned to Canberra in 2019 in its latest incarnation, The Wharf Revue: UNR–DACT–D.

 

Little Miss Sunshine: the musical

Book by James Lapine; Music & Lyrics by William Finn. New Theatre, Sydney. Director: Deborah Jones. 12 November - 14 December 2019

Christmas comes early to Newtown as the New Theatre presents the Sydney premiere of this delightful small-scale musical. Based on the 2006 movie that gave Toni Collette her break into Hollywood, Little Miss Sunshine covers an 800-mile family road trip to California where Olive, the youngest member, can compete in a beauty pageant and be ‘the first Miss America from New Mexico’.

Sidesault at the Melba 2019: A Festival of Experimental Circus.

Circus OZ, Melba Speigeltent, 35 Johnston St, Collingwood. 7-17 November, 2019.

The festival comprises of six performances showcasing both individual and group shows. Mutating RootsSubjective Spectacle and Common Dissonance are three shows which can be seen from 14-17 November. The shows offer very different perspectives on similar themes. They all have a very meditative and reflective approach which draws heavily on dance, movement and performance art and the slow, introspective pace is often disarming.

I’m With Her

Director & Lead Writer Victoria Midwinter Pitt. Darlinghurst Theatre Company, Sydney. Nov 9 - Dec 1, 2019

After some criticism a number of years ago, Sydney’s Darlinghurst Theatre Company has focused on increasing the number of women’s voices on stage. This new Australian play does that with full force - it’s created solely by women and is entirely about women. It hits the mark too.

Flight Memory

Music by Sandra France. Text by Alana Valentine. World Premiere. Directed by Caroline Stacey. The Street Theatre, Canberra. 14 – 17 November 2019

How extraordinarily poignant is the black box? Unable to save the people it records, it holds the last moments of people’s lives in the hope of preventing future deaths. For families of crash victims, it provides the most meagre of solaces: the answer to the question “why”. Based on a biography of David Warren, the Australian inventor of the black box, Alana Valentine’s latest project Flight Memory is a tale of sadness, persistence, guts, loss and triumph, underpinned by that poignancy.

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