Hol­i­day theatre a hoot

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Stage - Tanya MacNaughton

HURRY Up and Wait is the gift that keeps giv­ing for Queens­land-based in­de­pen­dent theatre com­pany de­base pro­duc­tions.

Queens­land Univer­sity of Tech­nol­ogy grad­u­ates Liz Sk­itch, Brid­get Boyle and Robert Kronk started the com­pany 15 years ago and cre­ated Hurry Up and Wait in 2006 be­fore col­lab­o­rat­ing with Queens­land Theatre Com­pany to fur­ther de­velop the pro­duc­tion.

It has since toured to Ed­in­burgh and Ja­pan and is show­ing this week as part of the Awe­some In­ter­na­tional Arts Fes­ti­val for Bright Young Things.

“We wanted to cre­ate a purely phys­i­cal ver­sion of Wait­ing for Godot for chil­dren; the first sea­son was quite ex­per­i­men­tal,” writer and per­former Sk­itch said.

“Queens­land Theatre Com­pany then com­mis­sioned us to de­velop the show in con­sul­ta­tion with chil­dren in schools.

“As a per­former, I spe­cialise in com­edy and whether I’m per­form­ing for adults or chil­dren, I’m con­stantly lis­ten­ing to see what’s work­ing.

“And that’s why de­vel­op­ing shows for chil­dren specif­i­cally is re­ally sat­is­fy­ing, be­cause chil­dren, un­like adults, let you know if they’re bored.”

Sk­itch said she dis­cov­ered her love of phys­i­cal com­edy while study­ing mime and clown­ing in France from 1999 to 2000 with Philippe Gaulier, who has trained sev­eral fa­mous co­me­di­ans, in­clud­ing Sacha Baron Co­hen.

Hurry Up and Wait, for ages three to 10 years old, fea­tures two clowns – a tall clown called Tally (Clint Bol­ster) and a short clown called Shorty (Sk­itch) – who are wait­ing for a pa­rade to be­gin at 3pm.

“Tally is very good at wait­ing, he knows to sit up straight and is very good at being pa­tient,” Sk­itch said.

“How­ever, my pint-sized clown Shorty is kind of like a flea; I can’t sit still, I just want it and I want it now, so my ap­proach is killing the time by play­ing around.

“Kids re­ally re­late to ei­ther Tally, who fol­lows the rules, or Shorty, who breaks all the rules or tests the bound­aries.

“We’re not try­ing to be di­dac­tic, what we’re do­ing is say­ing every­one has a dif­fer­ent ap­proach for some things in life and some­times you have to spend time with peo­ple who are dif­fer­ent to you.

“But ul­ti­mately there’s the clas­sic say­ing that time flies when you’re hav­ing fun and the two clowns start to play and dis­cover the power of imag­i­na­tion.”

Liz Sk­itch and Clint Bol­ster in Hurry Up and Wait.

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