Reviews

Hello, Goodbye & Happy Birthday

By Roslyn Oades. Malthouse Theatre and Melbourne Festival production. A Performing Lines tour for Road Work. Riverside Theatres, Parramatta. July 27 to 29, 2017 and touring.

Winner of the 2014 Green Room Award for outstanding writing/adaptation for the Australian Stage, Roslyn Oades’ and her cast use her very unusual ‘headphone verbatim’ documentary theatre technique to explore both coming of age … and ageing.

West Side Story

Music: Leonard Bernstein. Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim. Book: Arthur Laurents. Griffith University Musical Theatre Students in association with Queensland Conservatorium. Director: Kris Stewart. Musical Director: Heidi Loveland. Conductor: Peter Morris. Choreographer: Christopher Horsey. Conservatorium Theatre, South Bank. 27 July – 5 August 2017

2017 marks the 60th anniversary of the Queensland Conservatorium and what better way to celebrate than to bring together students from the Griffith University musical theatre course and the conservatorium in a production of West Side Story which also turns 60 this year.

Blackrock

Written by Nick Enright. Presented by La Boite and QUT Creative Industries. Director Todd MacDonald. Roundhouse, La Boite Theatre. 22 July – 8 August, 2017.

The latest production of Blackrock (nee A Property of the Clan) is a result of a collaboration between Queensland University of Technology and La Boite Theatre Company. It sees eight third year acting students join three seasoned professionals on stage to bring to life Nick Enright’s AWGIE award-winning drama. It’s a harrowingly emotional story requiring focus, commitment and a lot of trust between the cast and crew.

The Book of Revelations

Written and performed by Alison Richards. Presented by Black Hole Theatre at fortyfivedownstairs, 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne. 19-30 July, 2017.

Alison Richards has a gentle voice and presence in this quietly fragmented space. The staging of this performance is unique and borrows from theatre, opera, installation and performance art. The attention to detail and the meticulous aesthetics are very pleasing. Each aspect of the setting elicits the idea of a life full of history and memories and how our surroundings are a constant reminder of who we are, where we have been and where we may be headed. 

 

Mr Stink

By Maryam Master. Based on the book by David Walliams. CDP Kids production. Directed by Jonathan Biggins. Canberra Theatre, ACT. July 20 & 22, 2017 and touring.

Mr Stink stinks. To the people of the town where he has moved to take up residence on a park bench, that is his most notable feature, and the name that he chooses to go by.

And Then There Were None

By Agatha Christie. Wyong Drama Group. The Art House, Wyong. July 21 – 29, 2017

While lauded for her ingenuity, Agatha Christie has been criticized, over time, as being a bland and simplistic writer – not being able to sufficiently voice the intricacies of her plots. Though heavily debated in literary circles, this observation is particularly

noticeable through the tone of her plays, the majority of which she adapted. These scripts though ‘twee’, do give directors the option to play them for high drama or to find laughs, through the camp, stiff dialogue.

Incognito

By Nick Payne. Directed by Ella Caldwell & Brett Cousins. Red Stitch Actors’ Theatre, St Kilda East VIC. 18 July – 13 August 2017

To create and present a cerebral, challenging and complex work such as Incognito is a risky enterprise.

Billy Liar

By Keith Waterhouse and Willis Hall. Javeenbah Theatre, Nerang, Gold Coast. Director: Dawn China. July 21st – August 5th, 2017

If you are a fan of 60’s music then don’t miss Javeenbah’s latest offering – Billy Liar, directed by Dawn China – it’s a real walk down memory lane right into living rooms of that decade – great set!

The Coronation of Poppea

By Monteverdi. Lyric Opera of Melbourne. Director: Tyran Parke. Conductor: Pat Miller. Chapel off Chapel. July 15 – 22, 2017

Lyric Opera have provided me with many delightful evenings at the theatre, but never with as much vocal talent as was on display in this performance. Just to hear bass Damian Whiteley was worth the price of admission. He has been mainly singing overseas, and one can only hope he has settled back in Australia so that we can hear more of his clean, strong voice.

Heathers

By Laurence O’Keefe and Kevin Murphy, based on the film written by Daniel Waters. Hand in Hand Theatre. Directed by Claire Mosel-Crossley, Musical Direction by Krispin Maesalu. Nexus Theatre, Murdoch University, WA. July 20-22, 2017

Hand in Hand Theatre presented the cult musical Heathers to full houses, over a short season at Murdoch’s Nexus Theatre.

First time director Claire Mosel-Crossley chose a very challenging show for her directorial debut, and is a director with much potential, who has created a stylised, polished production.

Andrew David’s set is minimalist with clean lines, while Elie Hopwood’s costume design pays homage to both the film from which the musical is derived and the iconic Broadway designs.

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