Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Street Theatre: Boy Girl Wall

Ah, theatre has always been fond of lovers separated by walls, from The Fantasticks to second-most-famous-ever play-within-a-play Pyramus and Thisbe.*

Usually, however, the lovers know they're lovers. (And that they're separated by a wall.)

In Boy, Girl, Wall, our lovers are Thom (yes, he knows that "h" is a bit pretentious, but he's basically OK) and Alethea (don't pronounce it "Althea", she really hates that), and they remain completely unaware of each other's existence until the last few minutes of the play.  The Wall, on the other hand...

This was 70 minutes of sheer pleasure.  Boy, Girl, Wall, currently showing in Street One across the hall from The Flood, is about as big a contrast from the latter as it would be possible to find - except that both were shamefully undersubscribed on the nights I went.  I had the feeling that there was a lot of buzz about this show, so was surprised by the small audience, which didn't fill three rows ("Come on, there's only about f***ing 40 of you!" exhorted a despairing Lucas Stibbard as he tried to rouse a bit of audience response.  Which, once we realised this was actually happening to us, in a respectable Canberra theatre, the audience was only to happy to provide.)

In this tightly scripted, directed and choreographed piece, the fantastically flexible Stibbard plunges headlong into an innovative, whimsical, fast and very funny narrative, playing everything from anthromorphised days of the week to the Boy, the Girl and the Wall. And because the set - including floor - is one giant blackboard, he draws most of the props as well (supplemented by an overhead projector, a couple of sock puppets, and incidental music and sound effects provided by Neridah Waters). It's charming, and engaging, and it doesn't let up for a second until the optimistic end.

You'll laugh a lot, and leave happy.  Hard to think of a better way to spend an evening, really!

* The most famous, of course, is Nothing On.**

** I mean,  Springtime for Hitler. +

+ Fine, have it your way, The Murder of Gonzago. Happy now?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Meh, things got out of hand. That didn't take long. So now you'll need to register to comment. As before, only defamatory or obscene posts will be moderated; you can disagree with me as much as you like. Thanks for participating in the conversation!