REVIEW: I am Tasha Fierce (The Basement)

November 16, 2016
[Portrait of the Artist as a Young Fan] Fans of Beyonce will probably jump on board with I am Tasha Fierce without too much encouragement, but even those with only a passing familiarity shouldn’t be turned off.  Writer/performer Rose Kirkup enthusiastically educates us on everything we need to know, organically weaving factoids about the popstar with Tasha’s own personal history, […]

REVIEW: Don Juan (A Slightly Isolated Dog)

November 1, 2016
[Juan Direction] The false illusion of immersive theatre is that the audience co-authors the play with the theatremakers. That without the audience the play would not be the same. But the reality is most interactive theatre experiences are as pre-determined and scripted as any conventional ones. Any sense of freedom or choice is mostly manufactured, never rising beyond a clever […]

REVIEW: Tennessee Retro (The Basement)

October 20, 2016
[Southern Discomfort] Of the three major post-war American playwrights, Tennessee Williams strikes me as the most emotionally rich and rewarding, a master observer of the human condition and poet of the stage. But, despite his influence and legacy, it tends to be The Glass Menagerie, A Streetcar Named Desire and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof that he is best […]

REVIEW: Call of the Sparrows (Proudly Asian Theatre)

October 14, 2016
[Reasons to be Proud] From their modest beginnings with productions of David Henry Hwang’s FOB and Renee Liang’s Lantern, Proudly Asian Theatre have proven themselves as a necessary presence within the local theatre scene. Developed over the last two years using Short + Sweet as a testing ground, Call of the Sparrows is the culmination of their hard work and […]

REVIEW: Mockingbird (The Basement)

October 6, 2016
[Beige Comedy] Described as a black comedy about mental health, Lisa Brickell’s Mockingbird investigates the effects of postnatal depression (or postpartem depression) on several generations of women, starting with the recently pregnant Tina all the way back to her grandmother. The central concern of the play, to advocate and educate in an entertaining fashion, is an admirable one, but the […]

REVIEW: Vanilla Miraka (The Basement)

September 23, 2016
[Awkward Appropriation] Cultural appropriation is always uncomfortable to witness, whether you’re at an exotically-themed dress-up party or your friend gets an unfortunate tribal tattoo. A much trickier grey area explored in Hayley Sproull’s Vanilla Miraka is when the lines between cultures are blurred, when you share the blood of the coloniser and the colonised. Is it still cultural appropriation if […]

REVIEW: Close City (The Basement)

September 11, 2016
[A Doll’s Hell] “It is not necessarily at home that we best encounter our true selves. The furniture insists that we cannot change because it does not; the domestic setting keeps us tethered to the person we are in ordinary life, who may not be who we essentially are.”― Alain de Botton, The Art of Travel. Like A Doll’s House‘s […]

REVIEW: Thomus (The Basement)

September 3, 2016
[Shakespearean Aspirations] The main drawcard for Ash Jones’ Thomus is his use of iambic pentameter, drawing inspiration from the humble likes of Shakespeare. While not completely unheard of in recent theatrical endeavours (Mike Bartlett’s King Charles III being a prime example), it’s a lofty ambition worthy of respect in itself. That face he does it so confidently is the most […]

REVIEW: Nederlands Dans Theatre (The Civic)

July 1, 2016
[Towards Perfection] Let’s get one thing out of the way, even as someone who can’t claim to know much about dance, I can confidently say Nederlands Dans Theatre have created some of the best pieces of theatre you’ll see all year. The evening is made up of four distinctly different works of varying lengths (from 15 to 34 minutes): Safe […]
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