Normally when I leave a theatre, I rarely say anything. I allow myself time to digest the piece that I have just seen before I finally articulate how I felt about it. In the case of The One though as I descended the steps of the North Melbourne Town Hall, the first words that fell out of my mouth were ‘I f-ing loved that!’ The One explores the notion of finding ‘the one’, if there are more than one and what you do if you find him or her.
As we entered the theatre we were met with the sound of Mark Storen playing the guitar and Georgia King slumped in a chair. This pre-show entertainment was so simple and elegant that it set up for the start of the show beautifully. The show directed and written by Jeffrey Jay Fowler, gets right into the guts of the story straight away. As the show starts King starts telling her story accompanied with Storen’s guitar playing. The rhythm and pace are remarkable and I was immediately sucked into the story that moved at a solid pace but at the same time never felt rushed. It was clear and well-rehearsed.
King has a bulk of the dialogue and she delivers it with precision and subtlety. Her comic timing was always spot on and had the audience laughing at even the most serious of moments. Nearly all the dialogue is backed by Storen’s music and it adds a whole new level to the show. Storen plays with the same clarity and beauty that King delivers her lines with and together they are both remarkable. The only minor quibble for me was that the few moments that Storen puts his guitar down, he looked awkward, however when he picks it back up the awkwardness dissipates.
The lighting is stunning and quite incredible considering the space that they have to work with. Every scene is lit beautifully but there are quite a number of standout moments. My favourite lighting moment was when Storen was singing Unchain My Heart. Whoever designed the lighting needs a massive pat on the back.
If you are looking for a great story told well, a bluesy rhythm, fantastic performances and flawless tech then this is the show for you. I have seen over 70 shows this year and The One is definitely in my top three for the year. There are not enough superlatives for it. The One is showing at the North Melbourne Town Hall until the 30th of September and well worth spending your hard-earned on a ticket.