You gotta love a double bill. Los Angeles playwright, Andy Hyman, has created two distinct (and enjoyable) plays that explore love, transformation and desire. First off is Drake the Amazing, a story about actor Alden Drake (Scott Sheridan) who is traveling with the vaudeville circus in 1911. Audiences are in for some fun, slapstick moments but they’re also constantly taken in and out of the action by narration from character Astor (Andrew Johnston). Unfortunately, even with the very good acting it was hard not to disconnect from the narrated parts.

What would you get if you crossed The Truman Show with The Blue Lagoon? The answer is: the second play, La Dispute. Four babies are brought up separately in the forest by nanny Carise (Zoe Carides) and what follows is an experiment to test who will cheat first: the men or the women. What do we learn from this? That Hyman thinks women are narcisstic, attention-seeking hysterics and men are dopey but lovable creatures who can’t help but think with their penises. Noice one. But even with the gender stereotypes, La Dispute is an engaging and funny story that asks a lot of what ifs.

Published in Sydney City News online and in print on August 2, 2011


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