Maggies, 46 Stuart Street, Dunedin

14/03/2024 - 17/03/2024

Dunedin Fringe Festival 2024

Production Details

Writer – Ruth Carraway
Dramaturgy – Emily Duncan
Director – Cindy Diver

Happy you…!!

A comedy set in an Essex nightclub women’s toilet.
LAVVIES is back for the 2024 Dunedin Fringe Festival!

Funny, rude and just a bit poignant, LAVVIES 2 addresses womens health, addiction, parenting, gambling, saggy tits and sisterhood. The all-female cast and crew have created a play that is inclusive and identifiable to women everywhere (and to blokes as well). Even if you missed out on the first season, you will get caught up (literally) and have a great night out, (btw it also totally nails the Bechdel test!)

Rachel and Angela, our two best friends, are reconnecting after ten years of moving in different directions. The Dazzlers Nightclub is their old haunt, and the loos their old confessional. Secrets will be outted, lies will be told, then sobbed over with a glass of gin (or not). Will the girls and their emotional trust account withstand the deposit and withdrawals?

At: Maggies, 46 Stuart Street
Dates and Times: Thursday 14th March at 8pm, Friday 15th March at 8pm and 9.30pm then Sunday 17th March at 4pm and 8pm
Tickets: $20

Angela – Rosella Hart
Rachel – Sara Georgie
Stage Manager and other roles – Miriam Noonan

Comedy , Theatre ,

1 hour

The A Team is still terrific

Review by Terry MacTavish 15th Mar 2024

What is more fun than eavesdropping on fascinating snippets of other women’s lives in that most cheekily intimate of settings, the Ladies’ Powder Room, less stuffily known as the lavvy? The season has sold out before opening night, and scrumptious café-bar Maggies is crammed with bubbly patrons, most probably identifying as she/her, who doubtless saw Lavvies 1 by the very same sparkling team of Luvvies in 2019, and have been impatiently awaiting the sequel.

Nor are they disappointed. The A Team is still terrific. As best buds, reconnecting after some years when careers and lovers took precedence, Sara Georgie as Rachel and Rosella Hart as Ange are absolutely cracking. One of Dunedin’s most admired and trusted directors, Cindy Diver, has once again ensured a scintillating pace that keeps us in a constant ripple of mirth, while not denying us some poignant moments, when the friends let their ‘successful’ facades slip, and reveal some of the hardships of their apparently happy lives.

When we last saw them, in their twenties, the heartaches and catfights were chiefly about who was the slut sleeping with their best friend’s bloke. Maturity, playwright Ruth Carraway teaches us, comes with a rueful acceptance of the unpalatable fact that toilets are more use for swabbing armpits and changing Tena pads than as lurid confessionals.

Sexual satisfaction in your 40s appears much less important than menopausal flushes, and the warm recognition that it is your girlfriends who have been there for you throughout. Not so necessary when you have the thrills of a new lover or exhilarating career triumphs, they come into their own in the shitty times. It is Rachel who has supported Ange though rehab, though her loyalty is tested when Ange takes up with a toyboy, a rock musician that we can be pretty sure is a right loser. Now however, Ange really needs Rachel’s help, which forms the basis of the plot.

Maggies works well as the toilets of Essex nightclub Dazzlers, merry off-stage music and pub chatter merging with all-too-close and realistic loo flushes. As we are positioned where the mirrors would be, we can enjoy observing the ludicrous spruce-up rituals of our tribe, entertainingly depicted by Georgie and Hart. These two are most accomplished actors, exuding potty-mouthed confidence from their accents to their infectious cackles. Their costumes are bang-on too, a sharp white suit for Rachel and skin tight silver pants with black jacket for Ange. These are not ladies who plan to take middle-age lying down. 

Although Rachel and Ange (like their UK creator) are as English as warm beer*, the kiwi audience identifies with them, as testified by the murmurs of agreement and cheerful chortles when a smart line hits home. Director Diver ensures the puns and subtleties do not go unnoticed, and the actors have us well in hand, abetted by Miriam Noonan in a couple of fun pop-up roles, all giving the endearing impression of loving every moment of this light-hearted production. As do we. The audience is even bubblier as they exit Maggies, perhaps to go on to celebrate the perks of female friendship.

I hope Ruth Carraway does not abandon Trace and Rachel. As brought to spunky life by Sara Georgie and Rosella Hart, these two would make a most marvellous sitcom. We loved them in their 20s, we love them now in their 40s, and I sincerely hope we all survive to love them in their 60s and beyond!

*Admittedly they are in fact drinking tonic water, with or without quantities of gin!


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