With Short+Sweet Theatre festival entering the 8th week, the competition is getting tougher. Among the highlights, two international companies feature: Indian theatre company CreaShakthi presents their Chennai’s Short+Sweet winning play “The Quest”; while a Malaysian team likewise brings their own winning play “Good Girls” from Kuala Lumpur.
Week 8 is attributed to diverse subjects. There is a young teacher facing interrogation for a ‘crime’ she didn’t commit, a beautiful love story of aging and the loss of faculties, homelessness, surf culture, self-diagnosis by the web, a surreal debate between two cowboys, feet fetishes and a great satire on South African immigrants.
The final week of heats features ‘The Quest’ by Jayshree Venkatesan where a half-Jewish half-Indian investment banker’s seeks true love while carrying double cultural baggage.
‘Late for School; by Iain Craig Moss is directed by Lisa Eismen and stars Patricia Rowling about a young teacher being interrogated over a crime she doesn’t realize she’s committed: she’s late for school.
Wrong Decision? written and directed by Felix Carlisle is set in WW1 France – in a bomb crater in no-man’s-land. A dying Canadian soldier is surprised by a young German and then an Australian Sergeant.
‘Irish Stew’ by Carry Pepper (US) is a beautiful story of an old couple beginning to lose their facility with language. Irish characters (played by Owain James and Ann Elbourne) with an Indian director (Aishveryaa Nidhi), tackling Dementia.
‘Charity Case’ is Ruth Fingret’s self-directed piece about a cantankerous homeless bird-lady and a well-meaning stranger who discover a common humanity. Christine Greenough and Sandra Campbell star.
In ‘Like Peas in a Pod’ by Pheona Mulligan, Bill and Ben come from two different worlds. Erin Gordan directs Bill Jordan and Jaymie Knight.
In the Wildcards, and also coming all the way to Sydney to make their international debut is a Malaysian company with ‘Good Girls’ by Haris Hazizan. Directed by Dr Shark (a lecturer in civil engineering!) the writer stars alongside Hajar and Syuhada in a play that won a slew of awards in Short+Sweet Malaysia 2013. “Lisa is a good girl. She always listens to her parents. But how long can she keep up the Good Girl act before she snaps?”
‘The Sunburnt Country’ by Camilla Maxwell sees two Newcastle girls put their friendship to the test when they go holidaying together and encounter sun, boys and body shot. Jovana Miletic directs Charlotte Connor, Charlotte Hazzard and Tim Nathan.
‘The South Afreakins’ is Robyn Paterson’s hilarious self-directed one-hander – starring herself – that satirizes South Africans. She plays both husband and wife arguing over whether to leave the farm and their milk tarts and head for the greener grass of Australia.
‘Ankles’ is Michael Collins’ hearty comedy about friendship, feet and two strangers – young and old – who meet in the afterlife.
David Perin directs his own play ‘Deathbed’ – a story about love and its death after 25 years of marriage.
‘Under the Starry Sky’ by Kelvin Fawdrey (UK) is a surreal debate between two cowboys. James Brettell directs Simon Croker and Max Bulmer.
Finally Casey + Adam’ by Maggie Rose is ten minutes of mayhem and hilarity where two 20-somethings come to grips with Dr Google’s diagnosis.
Many of the finalists have already been locked in for the Gala Awards Final at the Seymour Centre York Theatre on Friday March 21 at 7pm. And the first ever Short+Sweet Variety Gala follows on Saturday March 22 at the same venue – showcasing the best 4 plays, 4 dance and 4 cabaret pieces from the combined recent festivals.