The last few weeks have been an enjoyable, challenging, enlightening, and entertaining time. No, I haven’t been on holiday. But I have been on a tour of many “new” places in Brisbane—or at least, places that were almost all new to me, and certainly were seen in a new light. Performance spaces I have visited this month included a bowls club, community centre, cafes, rehearsal spaces, pub back rooms, CBD offices, an antiques centre, and a car park. Anywhere. So much so that, when describing the festival to friends, I have taken to describing it as the “Anywhere but” festival (that is, anywhere but a theatre).
Ever gone on an office camping trip with a recently demoted HR worker? Been fired from the family business? Met a prince with an absorbed twin? Or received a purple space heart for purple space bravery? No? Then you’re in luck – your chance to experience all this and more comes neatly packaged in this rapid-fire sketch comedy.
As this was to be the play that closed off my Anywhere Fest for 2015, I suppose I had high hopes. I wanted to end on a strong point, with a piece of theatre that would leave me with a feeling, and have me satisfied at the end of my sixteen-show run as a reviewer. And you know what? LGBTWho did just that. It gave me a warm and simple foray into verbatim theatre (my first in the festival, I believe), and delivered what was possibly the clearest-cut experience I had in Anywhere 2015, aside from perhaps Deep Blue’s Into The Dark. Read More
Performed at The Bearded Lady (great bar, great beer, great choice in music) in West End, The Sexy Detectives’ Sexy Directive was marred by a couple of technical issues from the get go. For reasons unknown the show had to be moved back an hour and a half and there were a couple of technical issues with the lights failing. In saying that, for those who don’t read past the first few lines let me clarify. Should you go and see these guys? Yes, absolutely. Read More
One of the final shows of the 2015 Anywhere Theatre Festival, “The Sexy Detectives’ Sexy Directive” is far from an untroubled epilogue. The show time was moved back 90 minutes due to a venue double booking, and technical issues saw lighting glowing in and out for most of the show. And yet, the show was still satisfyingly filled with funny. Read More
Where to spend the final show of the festival (for me at least) why of course the female changing rooms at the Valley Pool of course.
You need a toilet, all is good you have found a clean one, but then there is no toilet paper
What do you do a) just walk out b) find a tissue in your bag c) have a panic attack
Answer is c) of course they other two a viable answers but would not make confronting theatre
Written by ISOBEL MARMION who also stars along side JESSICA MCKERLIE
This show explores the issues that people who suffer from anxiety often have to deal with, the sufferer and those around them.
Mark Cauvin gives an impassioned and surprisingly physical performance as the sole player in this confluence of performance art – citing Isadora Duncan and Giovanni Aldini as inspiration, he alternates between several roles: the wild, joyous dancer, the scientist, wraithlike, absorbed in experimentation, and himself, the musician.
One source offers the synonyms of patchiness, unevenness, and weakness for ‘mediocrity’ (and suggests the antonym of excellence). Magnetic North TC’s first work was far from mediocre: a thought-provoking work in progress that was a pleasure to watch.
Hosted at That Flower Shop out in Alderley, Me, Maria and the Moon is a cosy affair. It’s a small space which is well suited to the intimate storytelling of The Old Professor and his tale of love and moon exploration. See, the Old Professor is a member of a group of explorers who once a month row out into the middle of the ocean, climb a ladder and then jump to the moon for a bit of the old moon wandering. Read More
Bermuda is a play that I feel throughout its runtime oscillates in quality. Some elements really work—the humour, the space, the occasional peek through the fourth wall—while others are dead on arrival—the voiceover segments, the saxophone interludes and scenes that run too long. But in the end, for all its flaws, and for the fact that the play as a whole sorta overstays its welcome, I actually enjoyed Bermuda as a whole. Read More
“There is no respite from horror.” – Jenny Holzer.
The above quote (and yes, I am probably going to start all of these with a quote) is not in fact, from the show at all, but merely one that kept running through my head whilst I was watching and then afterwards. Not because I thought the performance was in any way horrific, of course, but there was certainly a lack of respite. The fifteen minute long intermission that broke up the two hour stage traffic was not quite long enough to catch your breath. The whirlwind of drama was symbolic in of itself in that way – from the tragedy of human suffering, A Dream Play tells us, there is no relief.
A modern nightmare – a panic attack in the bathroom, and worse yet – no toilet paper. But when your mental health is the cause of your problems, is divine intervention going to help or just make things worse?
This review comes from Casa Italia Community Centre in New Farm, unfortunately by the time this is published the season will have finished but my hope it gets another “life” some where else or maybe will be a regular performance at the centre.
We are patrons at a pizzeria run by brother and sister, over the night we meet the other patrons (actors) with help of a new employee secrets are revealed and apologies made.
I admit it took me awhile to “warm” to the characters but as the night went on I began to love them.
At times very funny at times quite sad the cast interacted with each other well and the patrons(us) loved hearing about their stories.
A literal translation of Arrivederci is “until we see each other again”—a phrase generally used in Italian to say “goodbye.” And that is probably the limit of my knowledge of Italian phrases. But I now know where to go to brush up on Italian, or to learn more about Italian culture, having last night visited Brisbane’s Casa Italia Community Centre (the New Farm home of The Dante Alighieri Society). The welcome was warm, and I’d certainly go back to Casa Italia.
But for only five nights in May this year, Casa Italia has been transformed into Giancarlo’s—a pizza restaurant with a core of regular customers, supplemented by a number of Anywhere Festival patrons. For only $18, Arrivederci ticket-holders had a chance to relax in cabaret-style seating—sampling free pizza to accompany drinks purchased at the bar. Best of all, we had a chance to enjoy a highly entertaining and accomplished comedy.
The cramped space of the Valley Pool change rooms, despite not having a hope of housing a fully-booked audience of thirty, offers in the context of People Piss in Here a welcome claustrophobia. Welcome in that it supports the production well, emphasising the stresses of the anxiety attack that takes centre stage throughout the show’s runtime. For an hour I was bunched up close to the other audience members, feeling their body heat in the cold sterility of the change rooms—and while I was uncomfortable by the end, I didn’t have any real issues with the seating given the show’s thematic concerns. Read More
“Sometimes love just isn’t enough.”
The Seeker Collective (as stated on their website) “seek” (ha) to confront society’s values, ideas and morals. What better issue to start with than that of relationships in the modern world. Bermuda tells the story of three people who love, lose and seemingly use each other in a love triangle that seemingly threatens one couple’s relationship. What happens when love just isn’t enough anymore?
Not quite a play, not quite an art installation – with each night spanning four hours of performance and exploration, you’re free to come and go as you please, taking away something new with every visit.
What’s most interesting about this second half of The Reality Event is that the weakest aspects of Game were what I felt Suicide depended on for its success. Where Game was clearly a meta-experiment, though never explained as such, Suicide is outlined to us from the get-go by its cast as a theatrical experiment. They explain in an explicitly ad-hoc way the nature of the show—an examination of the crossroads between reality and theatrical construction—and they remind the audience repeatedly that this is not a show about suicide. Instead, it’s a show that’s first and foremost about the process, the meta-level construction/deconstruction dynamic that the show explores throughout, rather than the actual acts being committed on-stage. Suicide here is treated as a device first and foremost. Read More
Whip out your top hat and petticoats for this revival of the Victorian era ghost story – despite the rather Australian heat, you’re still liable to shiver and feel goosebumps, if not jump out of your seat.
Anywhere Festival draws together passionate, engaging and passionate theatre with unexpected locations that are anything but traditional theatre spaces. This is exactly what I found when I went to watch Being Jesus last night.
Performed in an under-used room at the top of level of the Boundary Hotel, Being Jesus was a hilarious, boozy and cringe-worthy romp through Jesus’ birthday party. I’ll admit that initially I thought the concept a little far-fetched and was sceptical about how well Delirium Comedy Group could work through their ideas. I needn’t have expressed any doubt.
The blurb told me that “after thousands of years Jesus tries to bring the family together for his Birthday, but everything seems to fall apart”. This was an understatement. Set among a small dedicated space with little props, the actors did an admirable job re-telling Jesus’ conception, life, death and his extraordinary after-life. The actor’s performances were tight and their thorough rehearsing was obvious. They delivered their comedic lines with great gusto and never missed a beat. Their delivery was also enhanced by a good use of lighting, sound effects and music.
An array of characters dived into the scene at various intervals, adding great variety and colour to the script. I found myself in the presence of Jesus, his overbearing mother, his hen-pecked step-father, a creepy old man version of God, the recovering evil addict Lucifer and – of course – Judas. I was surprised by how well-developed I found the characters: they provided all the elements of a great tale of family dysfunction. All though exaggerated to our benefit; I can imagine Birthday parties of similar acerbic tension occurring all over the World.
I also found the script thoroughly developed, however it would have benefitted from a little finessing. Unfortunately the play could have been tighter had Judas not been invited. This sub-plot felt unnecessary and dragged the narrative on a little too much. A sharper ending would have matched the initial dynamism and velocity of the word-play.
Overall, I commend the Delirium Comedy Group for an extremely well-worked performance that will stay in my mind for quite some time. Catch Being Jesus while you can.
Review by Ashleigh Wadman
As we reach the final few days of the anywhere festival the expression “save the best to last” is ringing in my ears.
Tonight I was headed to Boggo Road Jail which closed it doors officially in 2002. Since then it has been used for various “events” and tours are conducted regularly
So it makes sense Zeal Theatre’s production of The Apology is held where the story begins
Only 2 Actors, Sam Foster and Hayden Jones but perform 18 characters do an amazing job, it is a sad story that unfortunately becoming a common subject matter, bullying and what happens when its get too much.
This play was written a long time ago, especially for high school students but bullying is happening more than in just schools
A lot like the Mana Bar itself, ‘Tits or GTFO’ gives off a sense of unfulfilled potential. Billed as ‘a journey into female pop culture obsession’ sole performer Ell Ackerman presents not so much a play as a series of vignettes and observations of being a girl within geek culture. Taking a minimalist approach to scenery, she guides us through the whole 45 minute show with nothing more than a few prop changes to signal the different perspectives. Read More
Sometimes it is easy to review a show immediately after its performance; often the key lines of what will become a review have formed in mind prior to putting pen to paper (so to speak). Other times there is a need for consideration to enable an approximately-worded evaluation. Wallace Shawn’s “The Fever” is definitely an experience worthy of more prolonged contemplation, given both its big issues of poverty, politics and morality, and the commanding show from its sole performer Zachary Boulton. Read More
As Australia’s first cocktail bar and video gaming lounge, Fortitude Valley’s Mana Bar is perhaps the perfect venue for “Tits Or GTFO”, a show described as a journey into female pop-culture obsession. And it is under the watchful eyes of Mario and co, that the audience gathers, on a scattering of stools and smattering of cushions around the ‘you shall not pass’ line marking the performance space. Read More
Waiting outside a yoga studio in Teneriffe was a different concept for me as I am usually doing yoga in one.
We were greeted by a friendly usher or rather a member of the orchestra, Deep Blue who I did not know until tonight that is who would be playing for us.
Now I knew that, we were in for a treat !
We went through the door then we are asked to remove shoes and place the blindfolds over our eyes, we sat on a mat, a blanket was there too as well as a cushion for our head/neck
Let the music play, it certainly was different listening to music with eyes closed, I had no idea where they were in relation to where I was lying down.
Someone announced the name of the piece and the composer before each piece of music, none of them were recognisable.
There’s not much to say about Into The Dark. Not because it’s a bad performance, but rather because it’s a great one—and not having much to say is likely a good thing, because it’s in the show’s inherent simplicity that Into The Dark‘s greatness is found. Read More
The Anywhere Festival is a great opportunity to see new work, and visit fresh venues around the city. The Sip Café has a great location, and it looks like it serves a good breakfast: just across the road from the river at 54 Vernon Terrace, Teneriffe. I shall certainly look to pop along again and sample the menu. However, I did wonder what passers-by thought was going on as a dozen or so of us sat in a semi-circle, on Sunday evening, watching what might have appeared to be striptease. Memo to self: re-read the description of an event booked a few weeks earlier before you go.
I think the concept behind Into the Dark is very strong and very clever. Without knowing for sure exactly what the creators were trying to do, of course I can’t be certain, but I think they wanted the audience to hear the music through their ears and not with their eyes; to find layers and intricacies of sound that might ordinarily be overlooked when thinking about the cellist’s legs or watching the conductor’s baton. Whether they succeeded, I don’t know.