Browsing: Performing Arts Reviews

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This play is usually performed closer to the day it commemorates in April, but Therry Dramatic Society have decided to make it part of the celebrations of their 75th year. Written in 1958 it is a play of its time, set in the 50’s but showcasing many of the problems that still beset our society today.

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Perplex is a contemporary take on absurdist theatre as it plays musical chairs with its varying unusual characters in a performance like nothing you’ve seen.

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Director Robert Kimber has said the theme of the play can be encapsulated in the idea of ‘moving on’ but at the same time we can never know where the next journey may take us. Time is of the essence in the play as is the existential question of time being seen subjectively by each of us.

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This show is a genial celebration of Gilbert and Sullivan at their most gloriously camp. A buxom milkmaid, a brace of affected aesthetes, a posse of lovesick maidens and the 35th Dragoon Guards combine to entertain us with a soufflé-light satire on fashions in art and aesthetics.  It may have been written in the late nineteenth century, but its universal topic makes it as much fun today as it was in 1881.

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With the upcoming anniversary of World War One this is a timely production and covering an oft-forgot section of the people who suffered through those dark days. Based firmly in the Adelaide Hills it reminds us of the difficulties faced not only by the men who marched away but also those who were left behind.

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Absurdist theatre at its most unusual, The Goat, or Who is Sylvia? provides a peek into the true feelings and unspeakable thoughts that plague the otherwise ordinary families of American suburbia.

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Set in 16th Century Nuremburg, the story explores the annual song competition and rivalries of the Guilds that controlled the city. Pogner, the goldsmith, will give his daughter’s hand in marriage to the winner of the song contest, Walther von Stolzing wishes to take part but fails to understand the archaic rules and regulations that surround the entrants. He is, of course, already in love with Eva. Hans Sachs, the shoemaker, schools him in the requirements and encourages the newcomer to share his ideas. This brings us to Wagner’s main theme, what is art and how do we define it?

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The over arching theme of memory is used to highlight the conflict between the three sisters who are gathered for their mother’s funeral. No-one’s memory is the same, even to having doubts about whose memory is whose. These sisters are very different from each other and are dealing with their loss in a personal way.

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With music and lyrics by the renowned Lin-Manuel Miranda, (The Heights, Hamilton) and Tom Kitt and Amanda Green (Next to Normal) Bring It On: The Musical is an exciting contemporary option for youth groups. The musical is very loosely based on the 2000 film of the same name and focuses on the competitive world of cheerleading and over-the-top team rivalries.

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Set in Vienna in the spring of 1986 Old Wicked Songs explores the relationship between a student and teacher. In this case it is a pianist who is forced to study singing with an unknown teacher if he wishes to continue his studies with his chosen professor. The characters have trouble communicating with each other but have a common ground in music.

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A holiday resort in the bush, on the edge of an infinity pool, seems to be the most tranquil place in the world; a place where you can shut off from the world and clear your mind. That is, unless you are one of the three characters in the State Theatre Company’s latest fare, Creditors.

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Twelve women meet in a public toilet. They talk about men and the rites of relationships between men and women. Playwright, Maureen Duffy describes her work as a black farce, a style of drama derived from the medieval morality where the devil and all his works were often funny as well as fearful.

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