Fair Dinkum funny war ef­fort

Sis­ters are do­ing it for them­selves in Been­leigh Theatre Group’s lat­est show, writes

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - PLAY SHOWS -

GET­TING a word in, jokes di­rec­tor Steven Pimm, was the big­gest chal­lenge he faced helm­ing an all-fe­male cast for Been­leigh Theatre Group’s lat­est pro­duc­tion, Dinkum As­sorted.

Pimm has as­sem­bled a tal­ented cast of lo­cal ladies for the zany com­edy, laced with a touch of drama, dance and mu­sic.

Set in a bis­cuit fac­tory dur­ing World War II, the show also stars a goat named Chaos.

‘‘This year is the 70th an­niver­sary of the bomb­ing of Dar­win, which was the big­gest sin­gle at­tack on main­land Australia in any war,’’ Pimm says.

‘‘This show fea­tures the highs and lows of the women left be­hind dur­ing World War II and is one of the few Aus­tralian shows writ­ten about the war.’’

Dinkum As­sorted’s story fol­lows a group of wily woman who run a Mum’s Army Civil De­fence Unit and stage a show to help the war ef­fort and save their fac­tory – with 2000 US air­men sta­tioned out­side town.

Pimm says it was a ‘‘real hon­our’’ to have so many great ac­tresses – Phillipa Bowe as Grace, Lynda Grant as Pearl, Joanne Smith as Joan, Linda Hall as Con­nie, Jer­mia Turner as Rosie and Bek Groves as Vi – in the one show.

‘‘It was very easy to cast this show, as the ma­jor­ity of the ladies are

a whirl­wind three weeks of belly danc­ing, camel rid­ing, con­certs in an­cient ru­ins, miles of tulips and a visit to one of the world’s old­est the­atres – in Epheus, Greece, built around 600 BC – Dress­ing Roomers is home at last. It’s great to see two big shows cur­rently draw­ing crowds on the Gold Coast. Gold Coast Lit­tle Theatre’s Daugh­ters Of Heaven con­tin­ues to shock au­di­ences with its tale of true youth crime. There’s been plenty of lively dis­cus­sion dur­ing the in­ter­val and af­ter the show about what mo­ti­vates two young girls to kill one of their moth­ers. Based on the same true story that in­spired Peter Jack­son’s Heav­enly Crea­tures film (and launched Kate Winslett’s ca­reer), Daugh­ters Of Heaven plays GCLT’S South­port theatre un­til May 5. Call 5532 2096 to book. Mean­while, Spot­light’s sea­son of For­ever Plaid is sold out, but as pro­ducer Cameron Mac­in­tosh says, ‘‘there’s no such thing as a full house’’. You might be lucky enough to score a seat if you call 5539 4255 be­fore Satur­day’s final show.

Arts Cen­tre Gold Coast en­ters a par­tic­u­larly busy pe­riod, start­ing with April’s Fool, based on the April 2009 death of Toowoomba teenager Krist­jan Terauds (see re­port, Page 9), on Mon­day and Tues­day. The provoca­tive drama will be fol­lowed by a short sea­son of the out­ra­geously funny and clever pro­duc­tion For­bid­den Broad­way in the venue’s

A scene from Been­leigh Theatre Group’s ex­pe­ri­enced ac­tresses who have per­formed with nu­mer­ous theatre com­pa­nies,’’ he says. ‘‘I love that the cast and crew are all pas­sion­ate Aus­tralians and they brought their own sto­ries and the ef­fect war had on their fam­i­lies to the early re­hearsals.

‘‘It re­ally bonded the cast to­gether and made them re­alise what a lucky coun­try we do have as a re­sult of the sol­diers who fought for us in the wars.’’

Pimm also worked hard to make sure the show was a true re­flec­tion of life dur­ing the war.

head­ing to The Arts Cen­tre Gold Coast from May 24-26 is Hope­lessly De­voted, an orig­i­nal two-han­der mu­si­cal fea­tur­ing the songs of Olivia New­ton-john. The show is set in the sub­ur­ban lounge­room of a mid­dle-aged brother and sis­ter who are caring for their chron­i­cally ill mother. The pair es­cape into a fan­tasy world, act­ing out the life and ca­reer high­lights of their idol. Call 588 4000 to book.

up with my old mate Jack Web­ster who has been play­ing Drake the but­ler in the John Frost pro­duc­tion of An­nie The Mu­si­cal at QPAC, in Bris­bane. Web­ster and I re­cently toured the State with the show Steppin’ Out With Fred & Gin­ger. He says he’s en­joy­ing per­form­ing with the four young Gold Coast kids in the cast of An­nie. Book­ings have been strong. The sea­son closes on May 13.

‘‘I am con­fi­dent this has been achieved with au­then­tic gas masks and pe­riod cos­tumes,’’ he says.

‘‘It is suit­able for adults who love to laugh and who love Australia and it’s his­tory. And how many other shows have a live goat on stage?’’

opens at Crete Street Theatre, Been­leigh, to­mor­row and plays Fri­days at 7pm and Satur­days at 2pm and 7pm un­til May 12. Tick­ets are $25-$31. Call 3807 3922 to book. black box theatre, The Space, from May 10-12. The lo­cal cast in­cludes Emily Mon­sma, Greta Brins­ley, Jes­sica Purdy, Jy Ether­ing­ton, Sarah Haigh, Tanele Gra­ham, Jack Har­bour, Alana Tier­ney, Steve Hirst and Cameron Twine, with guests Lucy Mcin­tosh and Matt Ward. The show is a Fill This Space Youth Project, funded by Re­gional Stages and sup­ported by the Friends of the Arts Cen­tre Gold Coast Youth Arts Academy. Call 5588 4000 to book.

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