SHOW RE­VEALS A FAM­ILY IN CRI­SIS

Javeen­bah The­atre Com­pany kicks off its year with a raw, hon­est por­trayal of a moth­er­daugh­ter re­la­tion­ship sure to move au­di­ences

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - DRESSING ROOMERS - KATE PETERS

The new year is fi­nally un­der­way with new shows hit­ting the Gold Coast. This week­end Javeen­bah The­atre Com­pany opens its 2017 sea­son with the emo­tion­ally charged Night, Mother. Au­di­ences will meet a mother and daugh­ter who ap­pear nor­mal to the out­side world, but the thing about life – and so too its re­flec­tion in art – is that the norm is usu­ally any­thing but. Jessie be­gins the play by calmly in­form­ing her mother Thelma that she will that night be tak­ing her own life, then steadily sets about pre­par­ing to do just that. With just the two women in the house, there be­gins a con­ver­sa­tion of emo­tional hon­esty that crit­ics have praised for its au­then­tic mother-daugh­ter dia­logue and un­flinch­ing de­pic­tion of a fam­ily in cri­sis. As we travel into the night with the women, we watch them peel the lay­ers of their re­la­tion­ship and con­front the empti­ness each feels in her own way. Night, Mother runs from to­mor­row un­til Fe­bru­ary 11 at Javeen­bah The­atre on the cor­ner of Ferry and Stevens streets in Nerang. Buy tick­ets at javeen­bah.org.au or call 5596 0300. Other shows in fi­nal re­hearsal weeks are Spot­light The­atre’s Satur­day Night Fever, Gold Coast Lit­tle The­atre’s Back to the 80s and Tu­gun The­atre’s Wait Un­til Dark. In­vet­er­ate party or­gan­iser Doreen Hin­ton tells us that she has more tick­ets avail­able for a char­ity per­for­mance of Satur­day Night Fever on Fe­bru­ary 19 at 2pm. For more in­for­ma­tion, call Spot­light The­atre on 5539 4255. Matt Ward’s Green­room Project Mon­day night star­ring Ma­rina Prior was the cul­mi­na­tion of a two-day work­shop then a day with the diva who acted as men­tor. All 14 as­pir­ing stars per­formed a solo num­ber with in­tro­duc­tory pat­ter – sev­eral show­ing huge po­ten­tial. The only down­side for me was the choice in some cases of to­tally ageinap­pro­pri­ate songs. A 12-year- old singing about life be­ing hard and re­la­tion­ships go­ing sour just doesn’t ring true – per­haps more as­sis­tance in the search for the right song is needed. Two of the young stars of the cur­rent pro­duc­tion of Matilda at QPAC (who are co­in­ci­den­tally stu­dents with Matt Ward) per­formed on the night, show­ing prodi­gious tal­ent. Lead­ing lady Prior then sang a duet with Matt and an­other block­buster song – show­ing that she is still one of the finest mu­sic the­atre and opera vo­cal­ists in the coun­try to­day. The evening was a good ex­am­ple of what’s avail­able for young artists on the Gold Coast at the mo­ment, pre­sented in a pro­fes­sional and pleas­ant venue. The mu­si­cal di­rec­tion and ac­com­pa­ni­ment by Brad Rush was su­perla­tive. Au­di­tions com­ing up in­clude those on Fe­bru­ary 5 at Gold Coast Lit­tle The­atre for Crown Mat­ri­mo­nial, the story of the Ab­di­ca­tion of Ed­ward VIII through the eyes of his mother, Queen Mary. Roles as the King, the Queen, Prince of Wales and Duchess of York are open. An­other au­di­tion is Tweed The­atre’s Broad­way Block­busters in Con­cert on Fe­bru­ary 12. Norfolk Am­a­teur The­atri­cal So­ci­ety are hold­ing Norfolk Is­land The­atre Fes­ti­val in Septem­ber/Oc­to­ber this year, and ev­ery­one is in­vited. There’s a very good travel and ac­com­mo­da­tion pack­age avail­able, and groups are in­vited to per­form a 20-minute one-act play to cel­e­brate the 20th an­niver­sary of this event. There’s $1000 prize money and many other awards. Go to nor­folk­island­trav­el­cen­tre.com See you in a crowded foyer!

Del Halpin and Amy McDon­ald are the two stars of Javeen­bah The­atre's Night, Mother.

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