Amus­ing snap­shots of life


Manawatu Theatre So­ci­ety (MTS) be­lieves it’s time to amuse peo­ple and make them laugh.

Fol­low­ing their crit­i­cally ac­claimed mu­si­cal, Quilt, MTS is pre­sent­ing four one act plays, all of which have a touch of hu­mour, at The Globe from April 14 to 28.

Un­der the head­ing of Corps­ing, the plays en­com­pass the themes of ab­sur­dity, life and death, re­la­tion­ships and the theatre it­self.

The plays are be­ing co-di­rected by Max­ine Dale and Gael Hen­ning Ede and are de­scribed as ‘‘a snap­shot of life.’’

‘‘In a one act play, you have a lot more scope to be in­no­va­tive as the di­a­logue is open to a di­rec­tor’s in­ter­pre­ta­tion,’’ Max­ine says.

‘‘We’re plan­ning to make full use of The Globe com­plex, both Globe 1, the re­cep­tion area and back­stage.’’

The plays are en­ti­tled Wait­ing for a Bus, Act­ing Ex­er­cise, Last Things and Hu­mour Helps. While the themes are se­ri­ous, the play­wright has in­fused them with hu­mour to ex­ploit the ab­surd side of the situation.

Wait­ing for a Bus is a farce about re­la­tion­ships and is set in a bed­room where the di­a­logue and move­ment cen­tres around the fast in­ter­ac­tion be­tween char­ac­ters on and un­der the bed and in the wardrobe.

Act­ing Ex­er­cise is a two han­der where the theme fo­cuses on whether one of the char­ac­ters is hav­ing a re­la­tion­ship with the other man’s wife. It’s a play within a play where both char­ac­ters are learn­ing a script and re­solve the is­sue through the lines of di­a­logue.

Hu­mour Helps lit­er­ally means hu­mour helps a crit­i­cal situation where a woman plans to take her own life and a neigh­bour in­ter­venes by us­ing hu­mour to dis­suade her and re­mind her about what life of­fers.

Last Things re­turns the au­di­ence to the bed­room, but where the boudoir is re­mains a mys­tery. An elderly cou­ple in bed wake up to dis­cover they’ve died. They’re un­sure where they are but, in the pe­riod of limbo, they look back on their lives in theatre and re­alise how im­por­tant per­for­mance has been to them.

‘‘The four plays are an evening out, far re­moved from po­lit­i­cal cor­rect­ness. They will ap­peal to the quirk­i­ness of peo­ple and give them a chance to laugh and en­joy a night of ab­sur­dity,’’ Max­ine says.

MTS’s Corps­ing is pre­sented at The Globe from April 14-28. Book via The Globe’s web­site.

Co-direc­tors of Corps­ing, Manawatu Theatre So­ci­ety’s four one act plays, Gael Hen­ning Ede (left) and Max­ine Dale.

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