MTC, Belvoir, Theatre of Image
20 December 2013
Southbank Theatre, The Sumner
to 22 December
I got this message from Sarah Walker:
"I'm changing my favourite moment of 2013 to Julie Forsyth leaning onto the stage in The Book of Everything, holding a branch, and saying gleefully, 'I've always wanted to play a tree!'You don't ignore a message like that. I only just got in, but there are performances tomorrow and Sunday.
I don't think you've seen this show and you must. Really, A-M. YOU MUST."
Sarah then wrote this about it. My review is "what she said".
I know that it's the crazy end of the year, and you're probably really busy this week, but if you possibly can, get to the MTC and see The Book of Everything. It's stunning. (And isn't it a wonderful time for Melbourne theatre when I can yell at you to go see an MTC show? Amazing).
It's beautiful and hilarious and heartbreaking and scary and silly and all the things that theatre should be. I cried. I cried a lot. I cried at Julie Forsyth being a child, and dancing, and talking for longer than about three lines. And I spent the whole last ten minutes holding my breath to avoid sobbing out loud, because the man next to me was a bit scared by my tears.
It's so joyous and sad at the same time. It captures so perfectly the moment when children realise that adults aren't happy and wonder why. It's saccharine without being sickly, which is a damn hard thing to achieve. And they throw enough serious darkness in to make you feel uncomfortable for the parents there with kids, which is excellent.
IT'S SO GOOD. Please try to see it. Truly.