07 October 2010

Review: Livin' The Dream

Livin' The Dream
5 October 2010
Meeting Room,  Fringe hub
to 9 October

I had no idea that I had lived someone's dream. Back in 1988, little Kate McLennan would so have hated me because I went to Expo 88.

In Livin the Dream, Kate McLennan and Fiona Harris open their hearts and embarrassing pasts to explore what it means to live your dreams. With vision boards (you've watched Oprah and know what they are), family pics,  a blackboard and videos of their comedian friends, Kate and Fiona sit down to a cup of tea and talk about the dreams they achieved and their total fails.

Fiona directed Kate in the award-winning and bloody marvellous  The Debutante Diaries in 2006 and in last year's  Dead River. It's so wonderful to see this duo being themselves and I can't say enough good about them. Except that it's great to see them joined by director Roz Hammond. Roz is already one of the best comedy actors around and twists stand up and theatre into a structure that makes the show feel like a chat in the living room with your best friends, while being as therapeutic as a year in expensive therapy.

The stories we love the most aren't devised by overly-clever writers (who all secretly admire the Da Vinci Code for its plotting), but are the day-to-day things that really happened. Real stories are the ones that our hearts love, even if our brain tells us to love the clever plotting.

By listening to Fiona and Kate read their childhood literature (I would buy the picture book about the baby chook being flushed down the toilet), show pictures of their not-as-hot-as-they-are-now teen years and reveal some big relationship scars, everyone in the audience can re-live their own remarkably similar experiences.

I know I wasn't the only person inanely grinning with recognition. Being neither blonde nor hot, I too aspired to be the achievable Jan in Grease (and it solved my lack of dancing/singing skill), discovered at 15 that getting off your face was totally the best way to talk to boys, used the phrase "get on" (what one did when "talking" to boys), liked The Pirate Movie and have spent time following and staying with men who had made it clear that I wasn't the one.

But at least I didn't talk to trees and can remember the name of my first with-tongues kiss.

Dreams are what get us out of bed to face each day, so don't consider missing Livin' the Dream

And Kate, Expo was great, even if I didn't see any of the Young Talent Team and was busy trying to impress a boy who didn't fancy me. 

This review appears on AussieThearte.com (without my Expo 88 pass).

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