Stage

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Out & About - John McCal­lum

Tya­garah Tea Tree Farm, By­ron Bay. Tick­ets: $45-$575. Book­ings: (02) 6685 8310 or on­line. Ends Mon­day. Romeo & Juliet There is a fine tra­di­tion of mak­ing Romeo and Juliet very young and naive. That cer­tainly ex­plains the breath­less fool­ish­ness of their light­ning-fast ro­mance. Peter Evans’s new pro­duc­tion ap­pears to be go­ing for some­thing like that but, in a play al­ready full of ab­surd coin­ci­dences, the re­sult is so fran­tic, the per­for­mance style so ex­ag­ger­ated and the tone so crudely en­er­getic that the tragedy is all but lost, to say noth­ing of the po­etry. Kelly Pa­ter­niti, as Juliet, comes clos­est to pulling this style off. Her per­for­mance is very clear, as a feisty girl who falls for a Romeo whose main ap­peal seems to be that he is noth­ing like any­one in her fam­ily. Alex Wil­liams’s Romeo is re­lent­lessly hyped up, con­stantly shout­ing. It is a bit dif­fi­cult to un­der­stand why any girl would fall in love with him so com­pletely and so trag­i­cally. The sad­dest thing about this forced pro­duc­tion is its fail­ure to de­liver suc­cess­fully a play that, for all its fa­mil­iar­ity and for all its faults, is still worth do­ing. Can­berra Theatre Cen­tre, Lon­don Cir­cuit, Civic Square, Can­berra. Opens Fri­day, 7.30pm. Tick­ets: $35-$90. Book­ings: (02) 6275 2700 or on­line. Un­til April 9.

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