Finally, caught the show last Sunday arvo, after being denied a few times due to it being sold out. After checking out the venue, I now know why it sells out easily. The place is only large enough for an intimate gathering of peers.
The set itself was simple enough, very surburbia, brick veneer fences, and recycling bins. This reminds us, that Melbourne is more than just the city, rather a collection of suburbs with different people, different sub-cultures and a fabulous story to tell.
The first story, 5 in total, begins with a very familiar theme for Melburnians. Ticket inspectors! (Tip: keep your theatre ticket handy). Our friends, the blue gumbies, confront a rogue passenger who refuses to produce a ticket or speak. With a lot of humour along the way, we're drawn into the mystery surrounding the passenger. His story, is about our origins, and hence provides a very apt beginning to the night.
The second play, in contrast to the first, takes on a more serious tone. Detention centres. We hear chilling accounts from 3 "hostages", who are after the one thing that most Melburnians take for granted, dignity. The acting in the second play was superb. The raw emotions on display sent chills down my spine. Definetly, my favourite play of the night.
The third play, I could not relate to well. (Possibly because I'm not a rich uptight wanker!!) It centres on a gathering of friends in the well to do suburb of Caufield. Melodramic and superficial, are words I'd use to describe it. It represents a part of Melbourne that's perhaps more at home in Sydney.
The fourth play is a history lesson on Melbourne. About the piggeries in Preston that made way for the surburb. It's a warning to us to preserve our hertiage. Although it was portrayed in Preston, this could be about any suburb. Carlton spring to mind. Other themes that can be taken from it could be the dangers of urban sprawl.
The final play I thought was interesting. A sampling of various noises heard in the suburb of Mentone. From dogs, to bogans (what suburbs doesn't have'm?), this play I think truly represents the surburban experience.
In summary, some great peformances by the cast, and an intersting mix of plays. Well worth seeing if you're the slightest bit interested in Melbourne. What's next for Melburnalia now? A road trip to Sydney perhaps?