Tag: one-woman show

REVIEW: Rosie Rodiadis is UNCLOAKED

Looking under the hood – cabaret-style

By Ross Larkin

Anyone who’s ever worked in a customer service role can attest to the array of fascinating, if at times downright frustrating characters one encounters, and is often obliged to deal with.

As part of the 2013 Melbourne Fringe Festival, Rosie Rodiadis is exorcising, observing and celebrating her own range of experiences had as that of a theatre cloakroom attendant, in her self-penned, one-woman cabaret show Uncloaked.

Uncloaked

The confinement and mystique of an old theatre cloakroom, complete with outfits and accessories galore from patrons of every ilk, make for a delightfully indulgent and clever premise where any persona can be explored and brought to life.

Rodiadis showcases her versatility as she frocks up and assumes myriad of characters including an angry Italian diva, a bright seven-year-old girl, a wise old alcoholic and a Yugoslavian whore, amongst many others.

Uncloaked is peppered with relevant and familiar songs, all sung by Rodiadis, several of which she has added her own lyrics and meaning to, and, in turn, provide the more humorous moments of the piece.

Vocally, however, opera is clearly her strength, and thus, the show could benefit from the inclusion of more – a style in which Rodiadis seems most confident.

As she tells the story of her cloakroom-attending days, there is no shying away from bold statements, sexuality and political points of view. Rodiadis tends to succeed particularly when embodying the more brazen, larger-than-life, characters, although ultimately the show is about loneliness and the guises we hide behind, as this isolated performer gradually reveals (and uncloaks) her personal truths.

Uncloaked is playing at the Portland Hotel, 127 Russell St, Melbourne from September 27-29 and October 1 and 4-6 at 8.45pm. Tickets at http://www.melbournefringe.com.au/fringe-festival/show/uncloaked/

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REVIEW: Stripped at LA MAMA

Laying a story bare…

By Adam Tonking

Stripped is the story of two sisters, Lillian and Sophie, estranged by the various circumstances of their vastly different lives, and brought back together through tragedy.

Lillian is a lawyer, married to Daniel, good friends with Louise and Jack: she is also dying. Sophie is a stripper, and there are more characters in this story; but what is important is that all of these are played by the one amazing actress.

Caroline Lee, creator of the original text, is the actress at the helm of all these characters in this overwhelming story about the repercussions of death on relationships. While the different characterisations took a while to sink in for the audience, Lee was in complete control the entire time.

She obviously understood each character down to the bone, and presented their individual identities clearly for the audience, managing the different ages, genders, and motivations with grace and apparent ease; in fact, one of the most provocative moments was told from the perspective of Lillian’s husband, Daniel. All this, while allowing the compelling story to unfold before us.

In spite of the subject matter, the script never became manipulative, melodramatic, or clichéd. Rather, it remained conversational and deeply personal throughout. I did feel at times that this conversational tone clashed with Lee’s often declamatory style of speech, and with Laurence Strangio’s restrained direction which occasionally seemed too stylised.

I suspect that these choices were made to clear any extraneous clutter for an audience required to keep up with the complexity of shifting narrative perspectives, however I felt that it created a barrier between the audience and the characters, forcing the audience to sympathise rather than empathise.

But that is ultimately a small detraction, in what is otherwise a masterful performance of a challenging and powerful piece.

Stripped is on at La Mama Theatre, 205 Faraday Street, Carlton, from Wednesday 7th March till Sunday 18th March. Bookings at www.lamama.com.au or by calling 03 9347 6142.