Nakkiah Lui’s play was one of the standouts of the Sydney Theatre Company’s 2017 season: lavishly designed, consistently funny, politically astute and sparklingly performed.
I saw it’s opening night and described it as “an all-you-can-eat affair” in a review for the Sydney Morning Herald. ” Course after course after course. Try one of these. Another glass of wine? Don’t say no. You can squeeze another morsel in, can’t you? And just when you think you’re done: Voila! Dessert!”
Resistance is useless, I concluded. “All you can do is loosen your belt and let your press studs pop.”
The reviews were positive across the board: “Lui and her actors, led with precision by the director, Paige Rattray, have a crisp and winking sense of comic space and timing,” wrote Cassie Tongue in her Guardian piece. “This is a company that’s comfortable in the middle of a frenetic and complex scene, and the actors take clear delight in the world they’re bringing to life, luxuriating in a cascade of awkward babbling or self-indulgent indignation.”
Writing for The Daily Review, Ben Neutze praised the show’s energy and broad appeal: “a wonderfully fun, crowd-pleasing experience – there are big and small laugh-out-loud moments, food fights, music, and wonderful physical comedy … One of the great highlights is the rivalry between the two fathers, played brilliantly by Tony Briggs and Geoff Morrell. There’s a real sense that these two have been at each others’ throats for decades …”
Revived for an east coast tour, the production sees the majority of the original cast returning to the roles they created. Miranda Tapsell joins the ensemble as fashion designer Rose though Lui will play the role when the production plays at Riverside Theatres, Parramatta and the Canberra Theatre Centre.
“Oh my goodness, it’s so weird,” Lui laughs. “But it’s really fun. I feel incredibly lucky that the people in the cast are all my friends now and that Paige [Rattray, the production’s director] had me in the rehearsal room all the time when we were at the STC so I know the whole show.”