25 September 2014

FRINGE part 5

Nick: An Accidental Hero
24 September 2014
Fringe Hub, Meeting Room
to 26 September

Renee Lyons is another wonderful creator from New Zealand. She tells the story of Nick Chisholm who survived a serious head injury but has locked-in syndrome, where his brain is active but the only thing he can control are his eyes.

Playing all the characters – two unsuspecting-hero mates, Nick's mum, a Korean orderly who got to know Nick in the hospital, and a woman he met online – Lyons shares a bunch of not-perfect people who never give up on Nick and unexpectedly catch you by the heart.

The unseen character is Nick, but she shows twisted and clenched hands and a body that can't move, which contradicts and questions the Nick we've come to know through the eyes of the people who love him.

This is strong, intelligent and beautiful story telling that leads with hope and leaves you knowing these people like you know your own family and friends.

All Out Of Pride
24 September 2014
Fringe Hub, Meeting Room
to 26 September

Kill me.

I sang along to Barry Manilow's "Mandy". I sang along because I knew the words. I can barely remember the name of the shows I saw yesterday, but "Mandy, you came and you gave without taking" lodged itself in my brain in the 1980s and refuses to leave.

All Out Of Pride is about shame songs. The songs we are ashamed to sing. Songs that come out at late-night karaoke bars and even the hideously drunk know that there's something deeply wrong about them.

Geraldine Quinn and Michael de Grussa dress in Bee-Gees-video white with visible chest hair. Well Michael has the chest hair, but Geraldine wears culottes. Oh yes, she has a pair of off-white, mid-shin, linen culottes with gold buttons.

I have some pride in not knowing the words to some of the 90s horrors, but then there was an Air Supply and  – fuck you, Quinn and De Grussa – "I'm all out love, I'm so lost without you..."

The shame.

Rod Quantock: Invitation to a Revolution
24 September 2014
Fringe Hub, Lithuanian Club, Main Theatre
to 4 October

I went to see Rod Quantock last night because I wanted to be in a room with people who also needed to share rage and tears about how our government is doing everything it can to undermine us, punish anyone who isn't in their gang, and create communities that are led by fear and hate.

I wasn't alone, and it was nice to see the entire Fringe demographic of 40-to-60-somethings in one room. We're ready to join Rod's revoltion. We have our orders and don't be surprised if we follow through, but we need some young blood. I know you're as angry as we are, so get off Twitter and get to Rod's show. 

He still greets everyone at the door (and checks in case there is anyone middle eastern looking and we need to dob on them for attending political theatre) and with his trademark blackboard, he talks about the IPA, Tony A... blugh (he can't say the name) and other lucky pricks. It's very like his comedy festival show from earlier in the year, but this time it's different.

This time it's harder to laugh. Not because Rod's not one of the funniest and smartest human beings ever, but because all those things we joked about earlier in the year have become reality. And it's worse than we imagined.

I still can't get it into my head that Victorian police shot a teenager this week. And I got home to read that Australia is signing an agreement to send refugees to Cambodia. I've been to Cambodia. I love Cambodia, but it's poor as hell, the government are openly corrupt and not dealing with issues like child sex tourism and the spread of AIDS, and it's country that's only just beginning to come to terms with its own living hell of the 1970s and 80s. Australia is rich, safe and huge, but we're going to send refugees – people who have lived a hell that Australians rarely have to face – to a place that can't offer them safety.

It's just not funny anymore.

#HeyASIO,  here's our plan for revolution
Some of these are on AussieTheatre.com.

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