Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Tag: Taryn Bennet

Sie Weiss Alles

James Cairns and Taryn Bennet in a script written by James. It is no secret that I am head over heels with James Cairns as a performer. I won’t miss anything he does. (Dirt is one of three shows at the festival that I would be prepared to see again.) I also think that Taryn is gorgeous. So it was a no-brainer that I would enjoy their performances but, I must confess, I was dubious about the subject matter.

A German SS officer interrogating an actress (who he had known previously) just before the Russians arrive. I have sort of done with this period in history, and I don’t really enjoy seeing English in German accents. But, this is an incredible idea, turned into an amazing piece of writing, twisting every possible moment on its head. Then there are the beautiful, original performances and connection between these two that make the work totally absorbing. But that’s not all. There are such layers, such surprizes, such thrilling observations. The two of them end up rehearsing the ‘get thee to a nunnery’ scene from Hamlet in the most exquisite, revealing and actor loving way. Genius. It was transporting.

I revelled in watching a ‘straight’ play, with real characters, real characterisation, real dialogue. I loved the reliance on old fashioned production values and the playing out of a great script. Sie Weiss Alles is great work performed brilliantly. See it.

‘The so much better than it sounds’ Frogs

In a dramatic upturn to my week that wasn’t, I saw the last performance of Taryn Bennet’s show Frogs at The Kalk Bay Theatre last night. Now I know that writing about a show the morning after its run has ended is like hitching the wrong way up a one way street, or smoking in the shower, but, Ugli Bob (who is involved in this show, and does the teeniest walk on too) was telling me that there are two performances at The Intimate at the very end of the month and I can’t tell you enough how you should make an effort to see this delightful show.

I must be honest, the title, press release and other reviews of Frogs have not done it justice. I kept reading that it was a tiny show, and bleak, with a glimmer of hope at the end. And sometimes, especially after the miserable time I’ve had, the last thing you feel like is ‘slit your wrist’ theatre. My experience of it was totally different. Although Taryn herself is micro woman, her performance and energy on stage is huge. Although the subject matter is the lonely life of a waitress/mime, Taryn tackles it with gusto, enthusiasm and boisterousness. The show crackles and pops and skips along, and I spent all of it smiling and even laughing out loud. There were moments of sadness and pulling at the heart strings in this very genuine story, but on the whole I felt it could have gone on for hours and I would have been delighted, involved and very entertained. Taryn is hilarious, quirky and adorable. Her timing is fantastic. I absolutely loved the show.

The title Frogs is misleading though, and I spoke to Taryn about it afterwards. It’s not that it doesn’t make sense, it’s just a bit obscure (and I can’t help thinking, a bit off-putting). So, take my word for it, and try and see it at The Intimate.

Oh, and I need to mention that The Kalk Bay Theatre are reducing their prices! Times are tough and one of the first things that happens is people say that they can’t afford theatre. Well, Simon and his team have decided to make theatre and food unavoidably cheap. Check out their new pricing structure for Gaetan Schmid’s new show Rump Steak opening on Wednesday.

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