budgie lung @ Ausdance Studio
8:15pm, Tue 12 Mar 2002
Short Review: Manic
As we park our arses in the tightly-seated Ausdance Studio, Greg sits nervously on a couch. The lights dim; TVs embedded in the set, and Greg leaps manically around the set, living his life as a pro golfer. He calms; cuts a few lines of coke on a Nana Mouskouri album, when his Mum drops around unexpectedly.
Such is the opening to this highly-charged, mile-a-minute play from the pen of Josh Tyler. Rory Walker appears far more at home with the role of Greg than his performance in Killer Joe, and delights with his coke-stricken behavior. The rest of the cast is competent, as is the direction of the work. The strobe-light was used sparingly well, and clever use was made of the TVs in the set.
Well, I’m not even going to pretend that I know what was going on here – I like to take the surrealist view, that the drug-peddling Eddie (“I’m a steaming red hot cock”) was the gremlin on Greg’s shoulder, and the white-clad Kitten was some kind of angelic figure – but that’s probably way off the mark. There is a very unsubtle use of wit in the play, which doesn’t detract from proceedings, and the last monologue/rant is very ills-of-society-centric ™.
I left this one feeling a little overwhelmed – there’s a lot going on, and the pace at which it’s presented makes it feel a bit… messy. Having said that, it is a wonderfully Fringey mess to indulge oneself in.