Is that alcohol I smell on your breath?
I've been eager to see what Silo Theatre Company are unleashing onto Auckland in 2011. At the end of 2009 they announced their 2010 season in style with PM John Key interviewing Oliver Driver. They had a strong start with That Face, When the Rain Stops falling was amazing, Happy Days with Robyn Malcom in a pile of Beckettian dirt was brave, and I thought their musical Assassins was brilliant (though Musicals we know are rather expensive...). Unfortunately they had to cancel their last show of that year Glorious by kiwi playwright Richard Huber, which was a huge shame.
Since then its all been quiet on the Silo Theatre front. The Silo Theatre Website has been under reconstruction since the beginning of the year, and all we've had is the odd tantalising tweet from the Silo twitter account - "Dan Musgrove tightly bound in polyester gabardine. Ahem."
But now, news! Silo have announced their first show of the year... and its certainly nothing like anyone was expecting. Its not playing in their resident Herald Theatre... but in a downtown Britomart bar! Its not a contemporary play by an award winning playwright... but a "new theatre experience" in collaboration with 42 Below Vodka.
Its called DID I BELIEVE IT? (new style, interactive theatre - tastes best with a vodka cocktail). From the press release sent last night:
Silo Theatre continues its mission to rip apart the traditional audience experience, collaborating with 42BELOW as they trade the traditional theatre space for a downtown bar for their first production of 2011. Playing in Auckland and Wellington this April, DID I BELIEVE IT? serves up a handful of highly comic oddball characters to disseminate the silly, the mad and the historic facts about vodka.
Power up your overhead projector and flick the switch on your Commodore 64. Take a trip back to 1978 and join the live studio audience for a rambunctiously irreverent (yet completely educational) journey into the world of vodka. Our nylon clad, sweaty polyester heroes slash roving reporters examine the hard (and soft) facts of the WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE and WHY of the world's most talked about spirit – VODKA.
Well, this certainly seems like a great advertisement for 42 Below Vodka, who are known for their quirky ad campaigns. Luckily, there does seem to be a genuinely interesting story here, and Silo have assembled some great talent for the project.
Silo Theatre was then introduced to 42BELOW who like them are about breaking boundaries, being original and fiercely Kiwi. Over intense bonding sessions, the real story would come to light: how a classic Kiwi battler conquered the world with an award-winning vodka made in a suburban garage. Much better than those Russian clichés of revolution and gloomy, introspective writers in grey rooms. The real revolution was born: DID I BELIEVE IT?
Director Oliver Driver alongside writer Jodie Molloy (The Jacquie Brown Diaries) have assembled a cast of NZ’s naughtiest comic actors: Adam Gardiner (Eagle vs. Shark; Well Hung), Toni Potter (Shortland Street’s Alice Piper; Ruben Guthrie), Brett O’Gorman (TOYS; I Heart Camping) and Dan Musgrove (Holding the Man; The Giant Face) are heading barside to bring Ms. Lilith Skies, Dr. Gwyn Cunny, Chad Lee Window and Gavin Bachelor to glorious lo-fi life for your viewing pleasure.
DID I BELIEVE IT? is a brand, spanking new theatre experience, paying homage to the educational programmes that British television network ITV sparked into life in the late 1970s. Starting with the Experiment series, these shows were formatted and copied all around the colonies including New Zealand. The result is a mind-blowingly hilarious, staggeringly offbeat live theatre offering which you can meet up with at the bar.
Pass me the Vodka. Read the full press release here.
The Auckland season is 9-30th April at 1885 27 Galway Street, Britomart. A Wellington season will be announced soon.