His Dark Relationships

two/fiftyseven, 2/57 Willis Street (entrance located at 70 Victoria Street), Wellington

08/03/2023 - 10/03/2023

NZ Fringe Festival 2023

Production Details

Simon Burgess- Writer and director

Those In The Dark

A slasher villain goes to therapy. An author struggles with paranoia – or actual danger. A young man makes an important choice. A strange mystery unfurls. All written and performed by the same person, these short four pieces explore these four young men and their respective ‘dark relationships’.
Booking Details: Purchase online at https://fringe.co.nz/show/his-dark-relationships or pay at the door
Prices: $10
Times: 5:30pm, 8-10 March 2023
-Fringe: https://fringe.co.nz/show/his-dark-relationships
-Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100089917934330

Note: “Those In The Dark” is an unofficial company – chosen because it sounded cool and Fringe wanted a company name when signing up.

Simon Burgess- The Slasher, The Runaway, The Writer, The Detective
Renee Heayns-Final Girl, Audience Plant
Natalie O'Shannessy-Stage Manager
[TBD]-Sound and Lighting Operator

Theatre ,

90 Mins (Aprox)

An honest and intriguing dramatization of young lives – or one young life

Review by Margaret Austin 09th Mar 2023

I accuse the door people of trying to sabotage the reviewer by making sure they lock themselves in the loo at The Well, 2/57 Willis Street. But then I’m mollified by an excellent Merlot in a sensible glass, and a handful of interesting walnuts acquired by koha. I tell myself this is all appropriate as a prelude to watching His Dark Relationships.

We’re just a few in the audience in a bare performance space furnished only with a table, a chair and a few books. Enter our performer from a curtained area at the back. He’s young – far too young I feel to have written a script with such a title. What we experience from him (Simon Burgess) are three scenarios* – all touching on relationships – but what we get most strongly is a highly personal look into our characters’ struggles with themselves, or is it different facets of the one young man?

There’s a photo, there’s a memory – a painful one – and there’s a decision to be made. “If I stay, I won’t be able to move on”. How many of us have experienced this pivotal moment?

There’s a pause before the next scenario. We can go get a drink, and the performer needs to change his props. A candle and a typewriter now set the scene. “At least the writing’s good,” mutters our man, leaving us to question the nature of what he’s expressing. Then what he’s hearing or thinks he’s hearing starts to creep into what’s being tapped out on his machine.

From the somewhat unsettling to the existential. The performer now questions himself and us. We get to learn his name, and something about him. He invokes his title. He questions his reality. I’m hoping he’ll come down to earth.His Dark Relationships is an intriguing piece of theatre, an honest dramatization of young lives – or one young life. It’s carried out with craft and adeptness. Despite what may seem a life troubled by events, the audience can feel assured of an integrity that will prevail.
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*[It was supposed to be 4 scenarios over 90 minutes, and it’s actually 3 scenarios in an hour.]


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