Emotional luggage unpacked with wit and musical charm
By Myron My
Debuting at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival after a previous Fringe appearance, Suitcases, Baggage & Other Synonyms starts with a bang (literally). This is a musical comedy show about five friends living together who are trying to determine where to go on a holiday.
Along the way to reaching an agreement, they and we are faced with many distractions and songs.
There is snappy and witty dialogue throughout Suitcases, Baggage & Other Synonyms and the show is littered with fun pop-culture references and expressions. The self-referential humour is done well and the laughs are extremely strong during the inane conversations that the housemates have over such important topics as how long should you leave yoghurt out of the fridge for…
There are strong performances present and the characters have been embraced by all the cast (the 2011 Melbourne Short+Sweet Cabaret Gala finalists Hannah Daniel, Sarah Jackson, Casey Dolcetta, Melissa Kahraman and Barnaby Reiter). The acting is excellent with special mentions going to Dolcetta for her ability to subtly command the audience’s attention and Jackson for her hilarious portrayal of an OCD-suffering comedian-in-the-making. The musical composition by Reiter is very impressive and he plays with great dexterity and skill.
During the songs, the five voices sparkle and nicely complement each other, in particular the New York medley song. Unfortunately, there are a few numbers don’t feel as lyrically tight as the rest of the songs or of a calibre with the acting. My other disappointment with the songs was the constant changing of speaking and singing throughout the song, making it difficult to fully appreciate melodies and musical nuances.
Suitcases, Baggage & Other Synonyms is ultimately a highly enjoyable performance put on by some very creative and talented people.Anyone who has ever lived in a share house will ultimately be able to relate to at least one of these five people either because they remind you of someone you’ve lived with – or of yourself.
Venue: Theatreworks, 14 Acland St, St Kilda
Season: Until 20 March | 8:00pm
Tickets: $25 Full | $20 Conc
Bookings: 9534 3388 or www.theatreworks.org.au