SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE SPECKLED BAND

April 23, 2018

Arthur Conan Doyle’s exciting thriller “Sherlock Holmes and the Speckled Band” keeps the audience enthralled from start to finish and is the second play in the Genesian Theatre’s 2018 season.

The Australian premiere of British playwright Max Gee’s adaption, which remains faithful to the original spine tingling short story from Conan Doyle, is directed by Tom Massey and features a cast of talented actors, headed by Chris Butel as Sherlock Holmes and Kieran Gilkes as his sidekick, Dr Watson.

Trying to solve the mystery by following the clues is too easy. To succeed in picking the guilty person, the audience must get inside Sherlock Holmes’ mind to guess “who dunnit”, before the master detective makes his announcement.

The action begins when a young woman tragically dies on the eve of her wedding, under mysterious circumstances. No reason for her death is ever discovered, but a heavy metallic clang and low whistle are heard.

Time goes by and the victim’s distraught twin sister is organising her own wedding, but late one night, she hears a low whistle in the dark. Enter Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson. 

“Sherlock Holmes and the Speckled Band” is currently playing at the Genesian Theatre, 420 Kent Street, Sydney until 12 May 2018. Friday & Saturday nights at 7.30pm with a Sunday matinée at 4.30pm. Running Time: 1 hour 45 minutes, with a 20 minute interval.

Writer: Sandra Tiltman   Photos: Craig O Regan

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BLOODY MURDER

November 10, 2017

The Genesian Theatre’s current production of “Bloody Murder” is a very entertaining combination of comedy and murder mystery. Written by Ed Sala, this play will have the audience guessing “who dunnit” right from the start.

Lady Somerset has invited six guests to her isolated country estate and when one is murdered, just before revealing a dark secret, she refuses to let her party be interrupted, even by the police. The action heightens when the murderer strikes again and the remaining guests come to the realisation that they must work together to find out who is actually making the choice of who will live and who will die.

Directed by Michael Heming, this play is unlike any ordinary murder mystery, as it has the audience laughing right from the first victim. The acting skills of the excellent cast keep the audience on the edge of their seats while they look for clues and try to find answers

“Bloody Murder” is currently playing at the Genesian Theatre, 420 Kent Street, Sydney until 2 December 2017. Friday & Saturday nights at 7.30pm with a Sunday matinée at 4.30pm.

Sandra Tiltman


FIGARO AT THE GENESIAN

September 16, 2017

IMG_5845.jpgFast paced dialogue plus a convoluted story full of intrigue, keeps the audience alert and on the edge of their seats, while watching the Genesian Theatre’s latest production. Charles Morey’s “Figaro”, is an adaptation of “Le Mariage de Figaro”, based on the play written in 1778 by Beaumarchais, which was initially banned by the censors due to criticism of the French aristocracy and gave voice to the growing revolutionary thinking of the era.

Directed by Shane Bates and with costumes designed by Susan Carveth, “Figaro” is set in late 18th century Spain and highlights the difference in the class structure of the day. The action evolves around Figaro, Count Almaviva’s man servant, who is engaged to Suzanne, the maidservant to the Countess. The mayhem arises when the Count, who has been married for three years, will not sign the marriage contract allowing Figaro and Suzanne’s marriage to go ahead, as he has his own plans for Suzanne.

Suzanne and the Countess are dubious of the Figaro-ian scheme to persuade the Count of his love for the Countess and decide to take matters into their own hands. Mistaken identities and broken promises follow, along with a love sick page, a birthmark in the shape of a spatula and plenty of doors and letters.

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Ted Crosby as Figaro plays the role with a gifted comedic touch, while Yasmin Arkinstall as Suzanne is the perfect foil to carry off the madcap happenings.

“Figaro” is currently playing at the Genesian Theatre, 420 Kent Street, Sydney until 14 October 2017. Friday & Saturday nights at 7.30pm with a Sunday matinée at 4.30pm.

Sandra Tiltman


UNDER MILK WOOD – NOT YOUR USUAL VILLAGE

March 26, 2017

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In the opening play of the Genesian Theatre Company’s 73rd season, Welsh Poet Dylan Thomas introduces us to a range of deep and quirky characters in his masterpiece “Under Milk Wood”.

A day in the life of a Welsh seaside village sounds quite tame but the fictional Milk Wood is a village like no other. The inhabitants reflect the village’s name, “Llareggub”, which is “Bugger All” backwards. During one Spring day we learn of the desires and dreams of the residents plus their loves and regrets. Here we meet Lily Smalls, who stares at herself in a mirror, the blind sea captain who dreams of his love, plus a woman who lives with her two dead husbands.

The town’s rich history, along with its collection of surprising characters, allows us to see not only how strange life can be but shows us the joys and despairs of age and youth.

Combined with a set designed by Martin Searles and direction by Ylaria Rogers, the fine cast brings life to what could truly be described as a very unusual group of residents.

The play is closely associated with the late Welsh actor, Richard Burton.

“Under Milk Wood” is currently playing at the Genesian Theatre, 420 Kent Street, Sydney until 8 April 2017. Friday & Saturday nights at 7.30pm with a Sunday matinée at 4.30pm.

Sandra Tiltman


GENESIAN THEATRE PRESENTS “OUR HOUSE”

September 11, 2016

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Sydney’s Genesian Theatre in Kent Street is known for staging a selection of quality dramas, but this time they have surprised us with a musicial, the Sydney premiere of “Our House”.

dsc09890-1This Olivier Award winning musical, written by Tim Firth, one of Britain’s leading playwrights, is a moving story that presents two paths which the 16 year old hero, Joe, (well played by Matt Clark) can take when dealing with the same set of circumstances and the consequences of each of the choices that he makes.

Music and lyrics, which give the show a happy vibe, are by British supergroup Madness and feature popular well known hit songs such as the title ‘Our House’, ‘It Must Be Love’, ‘Wings of a Dove’ and ‘Baggy Trousers’, all sung very professionally by the cast, who manage to do some great dance moves as well.

Director Roger Gimblett brings all the action to life in this amateur theatre production along with Musical Director Timothy Carter and choreographer Debbie Smith who draw splendid performances from the cast.

“Our House” is currently playing at The Genesian Theatre until 8 October 2016 on Friday and Saturday nights at 8pm
with a Sunday matinée at 4.30pm. The performance runs for two and a quarter hours with an interval.

Sandra Tiltman     Photos: John Pond


“APPOINTMENT WITH DEATH” AT GENESIAN THEATRE

July 19, 2016

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No season would be complete at Sydney’s Genesian Theatre in Kent Street without presenting one of Agatha Christie’s gripping tales. “Appointment With Death” is this year’s chosen production and it will have you guessing, right from the very start, which member of the cast is to be “killed off” and which one “did it”.

posterAll the action happens in the rose red city of Petra, where the characters or “suspects” are holidaying in an exotic hotel. Set in the hotel foyer, we meet each of the cast and immediately start looking for clues as we get to know their personalities. Mrs Boynton stands out as being particularly horrible, amongst a group of equally nasty characters, all with a motive to cause trouble. Once the murder has occurred, the clues all come to light, as the audience trys to play detective. Naturally every character seems to have a motive and with plenty of red herrings, we are left to the very end trying to guess who the guilty one is.

Directed by Barry Nielsen, with costumes designed by Susan Carveth and lighting by Michael Schell, the scene is set for the actors to draw the audience into the mystery. The set designed by Owen Gimblett gives the production a genuine atmosphere of being in the old mysterious Middle East. I loved the elevator in the hotel foyer, a clever touch.

“Appointment With Death” is currently playing at The Genesian Theatre until 20 August 2016 on Friday and Saturday nights at 8pm
 with a Sunday matinée at 4.30pm. The performance runs for two and a half hours with an interval.

Sandra Tiltman    


“FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD”

May 28, 2016

The Sydney premiere of “Far From the Madding Crowd”, based on Thomas Hardy’s 1874 novel set in rural England, is currently being performed at the Genesian Theatre in Kent Street, Sydney.

For this production, The Genesian Theatre Company has obtained the rights to use Mark Healy’s recent stage adaptation of Hardy’s novel for the English Touring Theatre.

Directed by Debbie Smith, the story of Bathsheba Everdine, the owner of a large farm left to her by a relative, is brought to life by Nicole Harwood, starring as the headstrong heroine. Bathsheba is in the enviable position of having three suitors, all wanting to marry her.

DSC09099 (1)Louis Cummings is excellent as Sergeant Troy, the cad who steals Bathsheba’s affections, while Ben Dewstow tugs at our heartstrings as Farmer Gabriel Oak.

Clever use of the minimalist stage sets helps the audience believe they are watching the daily life of workers on a farm in rural South West England, at the beginning of the industrial revolution.

This production features original music for the folk songs, as well as original choreography for the country dances that are performed.

If you have read the book or seen either of the two movie versions, you are sure to enjoy this production.

“Far From the Madding Crowd” is playing until 25th June 2016, with performances on Friday and Saturday nights at 8pm
 and a Sunday matinée at 4.30pm.

Sandra Tiltman     Photos: John Pond