Thursday 30 November 2023

ON/OFF review

We all have different parts of ourselves that emerge depending on our environment. This could be at work, home, social and anything in between. In ON/OFF, NICA’s third year Bachelor of Circus Arts students bring their on stage and off stage personas together in a distinctive production that allows them to present their skills and share their thoughts on what drew them to circus.

From the instant you enter the space, you can see this won’t be a traditional circus performance. Backstage has been transported into the theatre and you literally need to walk through it to reach your seat, getting up close and personal with the ensemble as they warm up, put final touches to their hair and make-up, and make any costume adjustments.

Saturday 25 November 2023

How Do I Let You Die? review

In February 2020, while dealing with bushfires and the looming pandemic, Michele Lee called her parents every day for 30 minutes. How Do I Let You Die? is a culmination of those conversations resulting in a gentle interrogation of life and death through the perspective of her Hmong parents and Lee's relationship with them.

As we take our seat, actor Alice Qin sits at a desk covered with post-it notes and politely acknowledges us. She introduces herself as writer Michele Lee, and begins to share with us the conversations with her parents, what brought her to that point and where these conversations led her.

Wednesday 22 November 2023

Happily Ever Poofter review

Fairy tales always come with a happy ending for the Princess. But what about our Princes? More specifically, our gay princes? In Happily Ever Poofter, Rich Watkins takes his audiences on a magic carpet ride through the world of a gay Disney Prince looking for love and acceptance while also enjoying some good old-fashioned sexcapades, through songs, of course.

With assistance from his fairy godfather, Prince Henry is whisked away from his kingdom far far away into the real world where he begins his quest to find his own Prince Charming, but until then, he's eager to embrace the smorgasbord that is gay culture and sex. From the get-go, Watkins is at maximum energy levels. He may have created this show four years ago, but the enthusiasm and excitement he brings feels like it's the first time he’s performing it. The story is quite loose but the pantomime-like element of audience involvement and the cheeky humour work in its favour and we can sit back and delight in the ride.

Saturday 18 November 2023

Butoh Bar 番狂わせ OUT of ORDER review

Simply walking into ButohBar 番狂わせ OUT of ORDER is an experience on its own. It feels like we have entered an underground, post-apocalyptic dive bar. Chairs are scattered around the space, various art installations are positioned on the floor or projected onto the walls and drinks and food can be ordered at the makeshift counter. There are roving performers and there are resting performers - lying on chairs, sitting at an altar and even hidden within a box. These initial encounters immediately succeed in setting the scene for the artistic collective of ButohOUT! to present, inform, inspire and enlighten its audience with what butoh is and its potential to bring change.

Monday 6 November 2023

Orlando review

First published in 1928, Virginia Woolf's Orlando spans three centuries and tells the story of a poet who changes sex from male to female. Roughly 95 years to its release, Antipodes Theatre Company present a retelling of Orlando as an electro-folk musical adaptation of Woolf's groundbreaking work.

Written by Rachel Lewindon and Willow Sizer, this reimagining is restrained yet ambitious. There is a focus on access and representation in the cast - both on and off stage - and the performers have combined their own lived experiences into the source material. This has been done with great care and attention to the narrative that feels like it belongs as part of the story and not just wedged in.