Briefs: Dirty Laundry – A Sparkling Show of Fun and Freedom

Dirty Laundry

Briefs: Dirty Laundry is a dazzling delight that bursts with energy and excitement. Set in a laundromat, this production challenges conventional notions of gender, sexuality, and performance art, all while delivering an evening of pure entertainment at Sydney Spiegeltent.

From the moment the show starts, the audience is thrust into a world where boundaries are meant to be broken. The cast of Briefs exudes confidence and charisma as they effortlessly blend elements of cabaret, circus, and burlesque into a seamless performance. Each act is a testament to their talent, with acrobatics, dance and comedy that leave the audience mesmerized and in stitches.

Briefs: Dirty Laundry is led by the charismatic Fez Faanana, also known as Shivanana. Thomas Worrell, with his impossibly fast spinning aerial routine, and Serenity, portrayed by circus artist Dylan Rodriguez, were standout performers who left the audience in awe. Another standout performer was Dale Woodbridge-Brown, who, along with Mark “Captain Kidd” Winmill, gave us hilarious facials and group routines. Other ultra-talented performers who made up the cast were Rowan Thomas and Brett Rosengreen.

The Sydney Spiegeltent provided the perfect venue to complement each performance. The set design and wardrobe of some of the routines added to the laundromat setting. Some of the routines did not seem to fit into the setting. However, they were all still enjoyable to watch. The wardrobe, or lack thereof, was fun and left the audience wondering what outrageous costume change would come next. The playlist was filled with wonderful nods to pop culture, while lighting enhanced the audience’s experience as we knew who to focus on during the performances.

What sets Briefs: Dirty Laundry apart is its fearless exploration of gender identity and expression. The performers challenge traditional notions of masculinity and femininity. Through their captivating performances, they celebrate the beauty of diversity and the freedom to be true to oneself, regardless of societal norms.

Briefs: Dirty Laundry is not just a performance but an experience. From the moment everyone entered the venue, they were transformed into the Brief’s world. A raffle ticket drawer gave the show a sense of interaction that you don’t normally see at many theatre shows. Audience members left their inhibitions at the door and laughed along in an inviting atmosphere.

Whether you’re drawn to acrobatics or cheeky charm, this show promises a memorable experience. The last Sydney show is this Friday, March 15th, so make sure to get your tickets before the group disappears. My one piece of advice is to go in with an open mind and enjoy a night full of surprise and laughter.

This review also appears on It’s On The House, and check out more reviews at Dark Stories Theatre to see what else is on in your town.

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French Film Festival: The Edge Of The Blade

The Edge of the Blade

Ooh la la—it’s time for the 35th Annual French Film Festival. This year’s festival runs from 5 March to early to mid-April, depending on where you live. So, stock up on your favourite French treats, French Fries, Croissants, Baguettes and Escargot, and get into the spirit of this film festival. I was lucky to start the festival with a French Musketeer-flavoured film, “The Edge of the Blade.”

Set in Paris in 1887, The Edge of the Blade (French: Une affaire d’honneur) explores a world where duels have been officially outlawed but continue to be a regular practice as the only possible way to defend one’s honour.

Clement Lacaze, a fencing expert, desperately tries to prevent his nephew from engaging in an uneven duel with more experienced Colonel Berchere. Meanwhile, Marie-Rose Astie de Valsayre, a feminist fighting for women’s equality, challenges the notion that honour is solely a male affair. The movie effectively portrays various forms of duels, making it a highly conceivable experience.

The Edge of the Blade is Vincent Perez’s fourth feature, and he acts as both director and actor in his latest flick. Perez plays the film’s antagonist, Colonel Berchere, who defends his honour by duelling the main antagonist, Clement Lacaze (played by Roschdy Zem), and his nephew, Adrien Lacaze (played by Noham Edje). Doria Tiller appears as real-life feminist Marie-Rose Astie de Valsayre. Although interesting, seeing her life story depicted in her own movie would be additionally pleasing.

The Edge of the Blade

The Edge of the Blade is a fascinating look into a part of history that is uncommon today. It delves into the craze of duels and themes of honour and justice. The film also displays a backdrop of impending war and societal changes. Fight scenes are skillfully choreographed, and the production design adds to the film’s historical authenticity.

The Edge of the Blade captures the tension of a bygone era, where honour, pride, and equality intersect. Vincent Perez’s direction and acting contribute to a film that balances action, drama, and historical context. If you appreciate period pieces and enjoy a touch of swashbuckling adventure, this film is worth exploring.

Don’t go at a snail’s pace—check out The Edge of the Blade at this year’s Alliance Francaise French Film Festival before time runs out in April. Films and film session details are on the official French Film Festival website.

This review also appears on It’s On The House, and check out more reviews at Dark Stories Theatre to see what else is on in your town.

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We Have Never Been Modern Film Review

We Have Never Been Modern Film Review

We Have Never Been Modern is a 2023 Czech-Slovak crime drama directed by Matej Chlupacek and written by Miro Sifra. The film is set in 1937 in a town that is being transformed into a modern metropolis by the Bata shoe company. We Have Never Been Modern is a glimpse into life in Czechoslovakia.

In We Have Never Been Modern, we meet protagonist Helena (Elisha Krenkova), a former medical student who moves to Svit with her husband, Alois (Miloslav Konig), a factory manager. However, their hopes for a bright future are shattered when a shocking discovery is made on the factory grounds.

We Have Never Been Modern Film Review

The performances of this film are excellent, especially by Krenkova, who portrays Helena with intelligence and courage. Helena is not afraid to say what is on her mind, which is a touch of humour, and to go after what she thinks is right. Another stand out of the film was Richard Langdon, who played Alexander “Sasa” Matula, a young man’s story we follow in the second half of the film.

The film ran for 1 hour and 57 minutes, but the pacing kept you watching throughout the film, especially during the second half. This is the second feature film from director Matej Chlupacek, but with his approach and execution of his vision, I will be watching more of him in the future.

The film has a rich colour palette, dynamic cinematography, and a production design that recreates the period atmosphere. Although the design recreated the period atmosphere, it did not make the film look dated. The film features a score by Martin Douba, adding suspense and emotion of the story. There were one or two moments where I thought the score was too loud for the story.

The film explores the themes of otherness and prejudice in a society undergoing rapid modernization. Helena is the only one who wants to uncover the truth behind the mysterious case, while the others are quick to dismiss it as communist sabotage or a curse.

She faces resistance from the local authorities, the factory workers, and even her husband, who are all invested in maintaining the status quo and the image of progress. As she delves deeper into the investigation, she also uncovers secrets and lies that threaten to destroy her marriage and her life.

The film is a compelling and original blend of historical drama, mystery, and social commentary. It challenges the conventional notions of gender, identity, and morality. I found the film a reflection of how we have grown, but how we have stayed the same in a way.

We Have Never Been Modern is a film that challenges us to rethink our assumptions and embrace the complexity and diversity of life. It can be seen at this year’s Europa Film Festival, which runs from Feb 15 to Mar 11. Užívat si (Enjoy!)!

This review also appears on It’s On The House, and check out more reviews at Dark Stories Theatre to see what else is on in your town.

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Spudtastic – The Appleton Ladies’ Potato Race

The Appleton Ladies' Potato Race

The Appleton Ladies Potato Race premiered at Hunters Hill Theatre earlier this month and has viewers take a trip to the rural town of Appleton.

The play, inspired by actual events, follows the return of city-trained doctor Penny to her rural hometown just in time for the annual potato race. The yearly potato race is the backdrop for an entertaining and thought-provoking tale.

The narrative centres around the return of city-trained doctor Penny (played by Caroline Lloyd) to her quaint rural hometown just in time for the much-anticipated potato race. However, the atmosphere takes a turn when Penny uncovers a startling disparity in the prize money – $1000 for men and $200 for women. The Appleton Ladies Potato Race shows Penny’s journey as she navigates small-town politics and challenges the status quo in her pursuit of justice.

The cast’s performances are nothing short of commendable. I felt the character of Nikki (played by Tonia Davis) captured the essence of rural life and was a standout performance. Caroline Lloyd as Penny perfectly blended city sophistication and small-town charm. The supporting cast also added some humour and authenticity to the play. As an ensemble, I think all the cast worked well together to keep us engaged.

Jennifer Willison was the director and really nailed getting to the characters’ hearts while keeping with the comedic elements. The set design echoes the charm of a small town with a beautiful backdrop and complementary sound design.

This play is a must-see for great storytelling and performance. It is successful in balancing entertainment with an exploration of societal issues. Bravo to the cast and crew for bringing this story to life on the stage. The Appleton Ladies Potato Race can be seen until December Third at Hunters Hill Theatre, so you better catch it while you can!

Remaining Sessions

  • Friday 1st Dec, 7:30pm
  • Saturday 2nd Dec, 2pm
  • Saturday 2nd Dec, 7:30pm
  • Sunday 3rd Dec, 2pm

Club Ryde, 728 Victoria Road, Ryde, 2112

This review also appears on It’s On The House, and check out more reviews at Dark Stories Theatre Reviews to see what else is on in your town.