IN IT TOGETHER
BATS Theatre, The Random Stage, 1 Kent Tce, Wellington
16/10/2018 - 20/10/2018
Three Friends – One Paddling Pool – A Big Splash of Life
Get your togs on – we’re hopping in the paddling pool! In It Together is a step into the living room of three bold and barely getting by 20-something women who serve up a zesty sense of humour, a generous splash of gin, and a big ol’ kick of that gritty real life stuff.
As Fran, Daniela, and Kate share triumphs and failures together, they grapple with their roles as friends, flatmates, and independent women. Expanded from the original ten-minute piece in Short+Sweet Festival 2016 (awarded Best Script), we’re bringing back the sassy trio and taking you for a ride through a year in their lives. Serving up comedy and drama, these quick and quirky women endear themselves to the audience and the universal struggle of figuring it all out together.
In It Together is a proud recipient of the Emerging Artists Trust Grant 2018.
BATS Theatre The Random Stage
16 – 20 October 2018
Full Price $20
Concession Price $15
Group 6+ $14
Student Night Wednesday $12
The Random Stage is fully wheelchair accessible; please contact the BATS Box Office by 4.30pm on the show day if you have accessibility requirements so that the appropriate arrangements can be made. Read more about accessibility at BATS.
Pays off with a riveting climax
Review by John Smythe 18th Oct 2018
Three young women step into a pool – an inflatable paddling pool – and share NIPS: Negative, Interesting and Positive news of their days. And nips of straight gin (is that really a thing these day: straight gin?). This much was the premise and main action for the 10-minute Short+Sweet 2016 sketch that won Catherine Zulver the Best Script award.
Now a night in their lives has become a year in their lives, playing out over 75 minutes. The concise visual and conceptual ‘in it together’ metaphor – the poor persons’ spa pool – is now part of a very cluttered flat set (no design credit but production manager Sarah Wood has clearly worked hard) choked with furniture, a fridge, a washing machine, food, crockery, clothes, books, posters … And the booze bottles, of course. So we now have to accept the pool as more of a naturalistic reality than a metaphorical device.
Zulver’s script is a bit like a sit-com in that the dialogue is a neatly articulate exchange of verbiage. While it is not obsessed with getting a laugh every third line it is more inclined to tell rather than show, let alone give the characters space to ‘be’. Nevertheless once we tune into the style, the revealing of their backstories and development of their lives and relationships hold our attention –thanks to good action blocking and pacing from director Imogen Prosser.
Jayne Grace’s Fran, the oldest on the 20s/30s cusp, is a nanny who diverts her (non)relationship issues into attempting to write steamy romantic fiction. The vulnerability behind her sardonic demeanour is dramatically revealed.
Catherine Zulver’s Kate, who works in an Italian restaurant, wears her heart on her sleeve and is very self-critical, rooted in mother issues and more immediately in her evolving relationship with her much older boss, Giovanni. It is this that leads to the play’s highly dramatic climax.
Charlotte Thomas arrives as the newbie flatmate Daniella, leaving home and her mother for the first time and re-evaluating the imperatives of her Catholic upbringing. As an electrician she is having to deal with patronising male colleagues on a daily basis and she grows in strength in the process.
All three give strong, confident accounts of their characters and the changing dynamics of their relationships – and it all comes to a head in a final ten minutes that pay off our investment in time and attention.
To summarise, then:
Negative: An awkward transition from stylised realism to pseudo-naturalism.
Interesting: The revealing of issues and concerns of 20-something women who know their lives need to move on from this phase – but where to and how?
Positive: The twists that avoid predictability; the whole-hearted commitment of everyone involved; the riveting climax and the resolving denouement
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