Reviews

Class of 2020 Showcase

3rd Year Batchelor of Acting and Bachelor of Musical Theatre Students. Queensland Conservatorium. Burke Street Studio Theatre, Woolloongabba, Qld. 17-26 September 2020

It’s ironic that the last show I reviewed before the Covid  lockdown was the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University's Musical Theatre students in Elegies – A Song Cycle, and now one of the first shows I’ve reviewed after the restrictions have been eased is their Class of 2020 Acting and Musical Theatre Showcase.

Let the Right One In

By Jack Thorne, based on the novel and film by Hohm Ajvide Lindqvist. Harbour Theatre. Directed by Jo Sterkenberg. Camelot Theatre, Mosman Park, WA. Sep 18 - Oct 4, 2020

Harbour Theatre are currently performing their third Post COVID production, which must be some sort of record nationally. As with most productions in the current climate, this was cast and had commenced rehearsing before the shut-down, so is the product of a long but stressful incubation period.

Quartet

By Ronald Harwood. Wanneroo Repertory. Directed by Gwen Browning. Limelight Theatre, Wanneroo. 17 Sep - 3 Oct, 2020

Quartet is a comedy set in a retirement home for former performers. We meet a quartet of former opera singers who many years earlier recorded a very well received version of Giuseppe Verdi’s Rigoletto.

Robert Benson-Parry and Dave Browning have convincingly created a music room and its adjoining terrace in this country home, with beautiful decor (Rob Vincent and Polly Waugh) that sets the scene well. The show is lit with precision by designers Brayden Neilan and Paul King, and features a well created sound design by Paul King and Daniel Toomath.

Lord of the Flies

Written by William Goldling. Stage adaption by Nigel Williams. Directed by Zachary Crisan. Redcliffe Musical Theatre, Queensland. September 18 to 27, 2020.

Since it was first published in 1956, this book has been read by so many people - adults and school students.  The image in your mind while reading does not match what you see here on stage in this production. These British school students, ranging in age, are wrecked on an island in the Pacific Ocean during the war and have to find a way to survive while living in hope of rescue. Initial attempts to work together in a structured way soon degenerate into two major groups with very conflicting views on life and how to survive.

The Hound of the Baskervilles

By Kent R. Brown. Teens at Garrick. Directed by Gail Lusted and Rodney Stickells-Palmer. Garrick Theatre, Guildford WA. 17 Sep - 3 Oct, 2020

Billed as “a comic thriller starring Shirley Holmes and Jennie Watson”, this ‘Teens at Garrick’ show is inspired by the novel by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and is set in 1889 at 221b Baker St, and the Murky Moor of Devonshire, featuring the nieces of Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson.

How to Spell Love

Written and performed by Anisa Nandaula. Presented by Brisbane Festival 2020 and Metro Arts, Brisbane.17 to 20 September 2020

Earlier this year, when I saw Anisa Nandaula perform her short piece as part of La Boite’s The Neighbourhood, a collaboration of diverse Brisbane stories, the feeling was positive, the vibe upbeat. The lockdown cast a cloud over that optimism.

Don Quixote

Ballet by Rudolph Nureyev, after Marius Petipa. Based on the ballet Don Quixote by Marius Petipa. Music: Ludwig Minkus arranged by John Lanchbery. Director: Rudolf Nureyev & Robert Helpmann. Cinematography: Geoffrey Unsworth. With Orchestra Victoria conducted by John Lanchbery. “At Home with Ballet TV” Australian Ballet streaming until 24 September 2020

If you want to know why Rudolf Nureyev became the rock-star of ballet following his defection from the Soviet Union in 1961, then you only need view this movie – a superb showcase of his amazing classical ballet talent.

Fiddler on the Roof Jr.

Book by Joseph Stein. Music by Jerry Bock. Lyrics by Sheldon Harnick. Primadonna Productions. Directed by Carole Dhu. Pinjarra Civic Centre, WA. Sep 11-12, 2020

Primadonna Productions’ youth musical Fiddler on the Roof Jr. was cast back in February, and completed four rehearsals before being shut down due to COVID. Despite a three month pause in rehearsal, these young people finally brought their work to the stage, performing to capacity distanced crowds at the Pinjarra Civic Centre.

Tilt 2020 (Program 2)

Various Writers. Various Directors. WAAPA final year Performance Making Students. The Blue Room Theatre, Perth Cultural Centre, WA. Sep 10-11, 2020

Tilt 2020 (Program 2) is the conclusion of a two part celebration of the talents of WAAPA’s final year Performance Making Students. The first part of this production was The Blue Room’s first performance since February, and this second program is also performed in this venue, once again using two of the Blue Room Spaces.

What the Butler Saw.

By Joe Orton. Canberra Repertory. Directed by Liz Bradley. Canberra REP Theatre, 10–26 September 2020.

 

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