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DOUBLE BILL FOR NEW THEATRE LAST WEEK JULY

BY Geoff Sirmai | 16-Jul-2012
A mouth-watering double bill plays at Newtown’s New Theatre nightly from 25-28 July. Quiet Companions – starring Lyn Pierse and Marko Mustac – is an engrossing mix of drama and improvisation that eavesdrops on the game-playing of a decadent Victorian couple. And The Bryce is Right features award-winning cabaret artist Bryce Halliday telling – in song and sketch - the stories of history’s most obsessed and wrong individuals!

Quiet Companions begins in a pleasantly naughty Victorian Salon. A mysterious Lord and Lady have escaped their spouses and stuffy lives to join their wicked society friends for an evening of exotic entertainment. When the others fail to turn up, they decide to revisit their younger days and indulge in a ritual of increasingly twisted games. As they play, they peel back the layers of their civilized lives and enter the nightmarish, psychological country that lies beneath.

Unlike most improvised shows, it’s not meant to be especially funny; there are no suggestions from the audience. It references absurdist theatre, post-modernism, Brechtian alienation, Artaud's Theatre of Cruelty, the fin de siècle world of Oscar Wilde, emerging Freudian psychoanalysis and the darker aspects of power and sexuality from the Bible. Oh, and Satan even gets a run, albeit in disguise!

Lyn Pierse and Marko Mustac have been performing, teaching and directing acting and improvisation in Australia and around the world for over 25 years. They have both been Artistic Directors of major Improvised Theatre Companies in Australia and they have a long record in acting, directing and writing, both for the stage and TV.

In the second half, Bryce Halliday, winner of the Showcase Award at last year’s the 9th Annual Cabaret Showcase, debuts his new one-man show: The Bryce Is Right: a musical journey through the minds of the perpetually wrong. Through story-telling, jokes, jazz standards, show-tunes and his own original songs Bryce Halliday explores some of the incredible beliefs people have defended through history and what it is to be right. From logical fallacies to conspiracy theories and the end of the world, it’s an evening of wine, wit, music, and crippling self-doubt.

Bryce Halliday is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Music and a regular performer for Impro Australia, providing music for this year’s National Theatresports Championships and Celebrity Theatresports at Enmore Theatre. He is also a regular special guest on Arthur B's Variety Show, armed with just his voice, a piano, and whatever passes through his mind at the time.

Often compared to Tim Minchin and Eddie Perfect, this intelligent performer continually delivers an honest, alternative and often poignant view on the world around us, digging from a bag of countless originals, as well as a few breathtakingly different covers.

Quiet Companions and The Bryce is Right play as a double bill from 8pm nightly 25th-28th of July at the New Theatre - 542 King Street, Newtown. Tickets are $28 (conc $25)

Bookings online at www.newtheatre.org.au or 1300 131 188