Arts & Culture

Downstairs at The Maj - Cabaret, Music & Comedy

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Perth’s finest in cabaret entertainment has kicked off this month for another season at Downstairs at The Maj.

Last week, cabaret duo Amelia Ryan and Michael Griffiths performed together in the Perth premiere of Livvy & Pete, singing renditions of songs by Olivia Newton-John and Peter Allen.

The line-up will include a diverse mix of cabaret, music and comedy to be performed by artists including jazz musicians, pop impersonators and seasoned cabaret performers.

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Switzerland by Black Swan State Theatre Company

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Joanna Murray-Smith is the Australian playwright of this chilling production which is based on the life and times of famous suspense novelist Patricia Highsmith (played by Jenny Davis). Highsmith is famous for her psychological crime thriller titles including The Talented Mr Ripley and Strangers on a Train.

Set in the Swiss alps, Highsmith's reclusive existence is intruded upon by the young and vapid New Yorker Edward Ridgeway (played by Giuseppe Rotondella), who has been sent by his publishing company to get her to sign up for a final last masterpiece in her Ripley saga.

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Coma Land by Black Swan State Theatre Company

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In the space between life and death lies Coma Land, a snowy purgatory that lonely child genius Boon (Kirsty Marillier) wakes up in at the beginning of the play.

There, she meets an excitable girl named Penguin (Morgan Owen) and her secretive father (Humphrey Bower), as well as happy-go-lucky party planner Jinny (Amy Mathews) and Cola (Ben Sutton), a panda who wants to fit in with the humans.

While Cola and Jinny are simply under general anaesthesia, Penguin and her dad have been in Coma Land for a very long time.

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Enoch Arden

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I wasn’t sure what to expect when I headed into His Majesty’s Theatre on June 14 for Perth Theatre Trust’s one-night-only presentation of Enoch Arden.

The night began with acclaimed classical pianist Simon Tedeschi introducing the show, setting the mood by performing two pieces by Schubert and Brahms, before award-winning actor and Bell Shakespeare founder John Bell entered the stage.

Originally published in 1864, Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s narrative poem Enoch Arden tells the story of Annie Lee, Philip Ray, and the eponymous Enoch Arden.

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The Great Ridolphi

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One man shows can be tough to pull off, but when I saw a familiar face in Steve Turner (Tartuffe, Dinner, Glengarry Glen Ross) take to the stage as Victor O'Meara, son of the Great Ridolphi, I knew that we the audience were in for an entertaining night at the Subiaco Theatre Festival.

The Great Ridolphi is a one hour distillation of all that is great about theatre. An intimate venue, a sparse but very cleverly put together set, a large helping of comedy along with a side portion of moving drama, along with an intriguing detective story that rattles along at a cracking pace.

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Heart Lines

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Can you imagine being a recipient of a heart transplant at a tender age of 19?

This is the central theme of Heart Lines – the 3rd instalment of a 4 play season as part of the Subiaco Theatre Festival.

The play centres around Tim, James and Anna - a group of young students who live in a share house in Perth.

Busy with studies, work, socialising, dance, music and surfing – life is good and just starting for the trio.

Meanwhile, on the Gold Coast, nineteen year old Noah is doing it tough as he waits for a life saving heart transplant which is his only chance of making it to age 20.

 

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10,000 at Subiaco Theatre Festival

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In 10,000, we are introduced to Edie and AJ through the characters they are playing in a video game. The game, which AJ bought when he and Edie first got together, acts as a metaphor for their troubled relationship.

10 years on, they are married with a three-year-old daughter, but Edie (Jessica Messenger, who also co-wrote the play with Nick Maclaine) has recently moved out.

A keen gamer, AJ (Tristan McInnes) hopes to repair their marriage by sharing one of his passions with his sceptical wife.

But before long, the lines between reality and the game’s science fiction adventure world become blurred, and Edie and AJ find themselves fighting for their very survival.

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