By Raimondo Cortese. The Artillery and Quiet Riot. Melbourne Fringe Digital. October 9 – 17, 2021 on demand.

Holiday is an engaging piece of experimental theatre performed by Amesh Edireweera and Richard Pyros (director), written by Raimondo Cortese and presented by The Artillery and Quiet Riot for Fringe Digital.

Two men plonked on bar stools, supposedly in Phuket, and maybe on a holiday, sit around chewing the fat. They are Shakespearean in delivery, clear and crisp in voice tone - punctuating eloquently, they offer subtle gesture and brief pause. They can easily be mistaken for a couple of fools that offer relief from a dramatic tragedy. Richard Pyros opens the show with a pining medieval love song before he retreats to his stool. He continues this quirky jump cut routine sporadically throughout the show.

Cortese (a co- founder of Ranters Theatre) is renowned for his minimalist approach and non-representational style. His objectives are placed with the actor to deliver honestly, be vulnerable to the experience and stay raw. He writes with the purpose to reveal things outside of the normal while exposing the nuances of day-to-day life.

Edireweera and Pyros are impeccable professional actors, and work brilliantly together as they weave their conversations around religious ideologies, forgetting to pick up the lay by, or a dog called Otto who eats an orange. It is almost like sitting on a tram overhearing a conversation but these guys do it with cheeky finesse. They are entertaining, comical and farcical.

The set is quaintly surreal - an inflatable pool sandwiched between a chaise lounge and the two bar stools. This production is filmic.

Holiday is a fun piece of theatre. I recommend the experience.

Flora Georgiou

Image credit - Damian Vincenzi and Katrina Warnecke.

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