As you walk into the theatre, you notice two things; the four presenters standing in frozen positions, holding wrapped presents around what seems to be a baby in a small cot. They are transfixed looking at the baby. On each audience seat, you will find some type of small child’s toy. The stage lighting is un-instructive, the seating intimate.
There is a slight chatter from the audience members as they talk and find their seating.
From this one can sense that this is no ordinary play, the staging is sparse, with only an array of ribbons hanging from a central point and fanning out to form what can be described as the outline of a tent.
The lights dim, the background sounds begin, and the performers come to life.
The baby and the cot are transformed into a small dimly light campfire set forward to the right of the stage, the performers are sitting around the fire, and you are transported into the dialogue between pairs of characters, along their journey to seek out the meaning of the bright star.
The play is woven with thought-provoking discussions, on various scenarios, along with reflections about modern society, and one-liners of witty humour.
The audience was very incentive, listening and following the threads of the play as the performers travelled closer and closer to the stars position, as they do so, the tension between each character unfolds.
From a technical perspective, I enjoyed Eryn Kimberley’s staging and direction, along with the Dramaturgy by Vidya Rajan. The lighting was minimal and very effective; the sound would have been enhanced by amplifying each of the performers, as at times it was difficult to pick up some of the close dialogue, which is a pity considering that Hayley Lawson-Smith has written such an excellent play.
The presenters; Andrea Mendez. Mohan Lakshmipathy. Paul Wentford and Berk Ozturk.
are outstanding in maintaining the pulse and rhythm of the journey.
The dialogue and interactions presents naturally along with the facial expressions, particularly those of Wentford, whose character becomes the anchor point, and of Lakshmipathy who provides light and shade both vocally and expressively.
Ozturk, whose character is the fourth person in “We Three” provides an integral part in each of the other three characters, while at times, his presence is unassuming; his stage presence becomes a key development. Ozturk presents this character well even when he is frozen in position.
Mendez portrays brilliantly, a down to earth very pregnant character, who becomes the pivotal person along the journey; as the journey continues towards the bright star, and the coincidental birth of her baby.
We Three presented by Gasworks Arts Park and Dramatic Pause Theatre
Studio Theatre, Gasworks Arts Park, 21 Graham St, Albert Park
Dates: 25th July to 1st August at 8.00 pm.