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Review - Once in Royal David’s City: star performance from Jason Klarwein

Above: Jason Klarwein and Penny Everingham’s Christmas morning. Right:Christmas sing-along. Deanne Scott's after-show photos follow the review. Once in Royal David’s City By Michael Gow Directed by Sam Strong Queensland Theatre Playhouse Theatre Queensland Performing Arts Centre South Bank Brisbane Season: April 22-May 14, Running time: 100 minutes with no interval. Bookings: or 136 246 This is by far the most popular play Michael Gow has written since Away back in 1986. It has echoes too of his major hit – family Christmas at the beach, cancer, coping with death of loved one, political views – and even a tribute the historical theatre greats. Gow uses every trick in the boo

Review - Hotel Sorrento: consistently strong cast

Hotel Sorrento Written by Hannie Rayson Directed by Ed Bone Act 1 Theatre Old Shire Hall, Cnr Gympie Rd and Hall Street Strathpine April 21 – May 1.Bookings: 0458 579 269, email: or This play, Hotel Sorrento, is set in a small town of that name on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria in the year 1992. Three sisters, who were brought up in this small town environment come back together after ten years separation. Of the three, Hilary still lives in the same house with her father and sixteen year old son and is joined by sister Pippa returning from New York where she works in advertising and Meg, a writer from Lon

Review - Beenleigh Theatre Group’s Cosi: immensely funny

Avove: Taking over the asylum. Below right; Lewis, played by Aaron Dora and Roy (Brent Schon). Photos by Adam Finch. Cosi By Louis Nowra Directed by Timothy Wynn Beenleigh Theatre Group Crete Street Theatre Beenleigh Season: April 21- May 6. Booking: or: 07 3807 3922 Cosi is set in 1971 to the background of student protests against Australia’s involvement in the Vietnam War. It is the story of a university student who agrees to direct a play in a lunatic asylum and use psychiatric patients in a social experiment to assist with their therapy. However, it becomes rapidly clear that he may have bitten off more than he can chew with the large range of mental d

Shakespeare's romantic battle of wits and wills gets an update

New Farm Nash Theatre has created a fascinating new version of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. Padua's a rough town to make a living, what with the competition between crime families. In the middle of it all is Baptista and her bar, maintaining a balance of power - as long as everyone pays their tab. Things are getting complicated though. Take Baptista's daughters. Bianca is the soft, beautiful, buxom object of desire for half the Mafia. Katherina is the hard-drinking, hard-working, hard fighting, shrew that refuses to let any man use her sister. Baptista is looking to make the right partnership, but can't catch a break. In the midst of this is Petruchio - adrift in the world and flus

QPAC and the Royal Ballet takes dance into the community

Alessandra Ferri in Woolf Works Photo: Tristram Kenton Community workshop and participation project, We All Dance, commenced this week as part of the 2017 QPAC International Series residency program that frames the exclusive main stage season from The Royal Ballet at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC). We All Dance is a workshop program facilitated by QPAC across four months (before, during and after The Royal Ballet’s visit), and is set to amplify the impact of The Royal Ballet beyond their exclusive Brisbane seasons of Woolf Works and The Winter’s Tale from 29 June to 9 July 2017. Through workshops, masterclasses, online activities, performances and community building processes d

Review - Circus Oz: Model Citizens: bravado and fun

Above: Mitch checks out his sacrificial lambs for the Australia Day barbecue Model Citizens Circus Oz Directed by Rob Tannion Playhouse Theatre Queensland Performing Arts Centre South Bank Brisbane Brisbane season has ended. Model Citizens is the first creation to be directed by Circus Oz’s new Artistic Director, Rob Tannion and it contains all the bravado and fun you would expect from Circus Oz, plus a lot more. The show is a brilliant progressive move for the company It is rollicking 100 minute romp through amazing tumbling, balancing, comedy, and slapstick, plus great live music and some tongue in cheek political and social comment as the audience is taken on this journey through a chaot

Review - Minefields and Miniskirts: moving and absorbing

Above: (from left) Tanya McCall, Francis Marrington, Libby Bancroft, Elizabeth Best and Hayley Fielding. Right: Hayley Fielding and Libby Bancroft. Minefields and Miniskirts By Siobhan McHugh Adapted by Terrence O’Connell Directed by Bronwyn Morrow Brisbane Arts Theatre Petrie terrace Brisbane Season: April 8-18. Running time: two hours including interval. Bookings (07) 3369 2344 This play surfaced in 1993 adapted from Siobhan McHugh’s book and radio series of interviews with women affected in different ways by the Vietnam War. The stories were distilled into five characters – those on the frontline, the volunteer, the journalist, the nurse and the entertainer and t

Review - Grease: The Arena Experience: spectacular for sure

T-birds and Pink Ladies, along with Teen Angel, are ready to rock. Grease: The Arena Experience Book, Music and Lyrics by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey Director and choreographer Callum Mansfield Music Director Dennett Hudson Harvest Rain Theatre Company Brisbane Convention Centre Season: April 7-9. Bookings: Running time: Two hours 10 minutes including interval Harvest Rain has delivered the goods again. The company promised something spectacular and, with 850 youngsters, well disciplined and in time with their own choreography, dancing, walking, running, and cheering, a whole new dimension was added to Grease. Director and choreographer Callum Mansfield showed sheer geniu

Review - Stones in his Pockets: Hilarious from start to finish

Stones in his Pockets By Marie Jones Directed by Chris Bendall Presented by Critical Stages QUT Gardens Theatre George Street Brisbane Season was from 31 May to 1 April. Stones in his Pockets is the tale of a quiet Irish community in County Kerry which is disrupted by the filming by Hollywood moguls of a story of a budding romance between a rich girl and a local farmer. Behind the scenes of the film is the growing friction that develops between the locals hired as extras and the Hollywood big shots. Grant Cartwright and Sean Hawkins are the two amazingly talented actors who narrate the story, playing 15 characters between them. The story centres on Grant’s and Sean’s ‘main’ characters, Charl

Review - Red Sky Morning: strong, haunting theatre

Below right: Madison Kennedy-Tucker and Heidi Manchè. Right: Wayne Bassett. StartFragment Photos by Richard Barakat.EndFragment Red Sky Morning By Tom Holloway Directed by Beth Child Room to Play Production Taylor King Gallery Thurlow Street Newmarket Brisbane Season: March 29-April 8. Duration 70 minutes with no interval. Bookings: Red Sky Morning is a haunting 70 minutes of strong and difficult to perform theatre that was perfectly captured by the shoestring independent company Room to Play. It was perfectly cast and finely directed by Beth Child. It is set in a rural town somewhere in Australia with a 24-hour look at what seems to be a very traditional family.

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