Meteor Theatre, 1 Victoria Street, Hamilton
02/05/2019 - 07/05/2019
Carving in Ice Theatre is proud to stage a selection of short works by Harold Pinter at The Meteor. The plays include That’s All, Precisely, Mountain Language, Night, That’s All and Party Time.
“Some of these are very short two-hander dramatic sketches (That’s Your Trouble, Precisely), and a couple are short plays with larger casts (Party Time, Mountain Language)” says Director and Carving in Ice founder Gaye Poole. “In this collection at each performance you’ll get a taste of the Pinter dramatic sketch, a Pinter memory play and plays of the more political Pinter.”
This Carving in Ice Theatre ensemble comprises Julianne Boyle, Kendra Boyle, Phil Dalziel, Mandy Faulkner, Liam Hinton, Richard Homan, Jack Knowles, Clive Lamdin, David Lumsden, Conor Maxwell, Missy Mooney, David Simes, James Smith, Tycho Smith, and Christina Wilson. Cast members will portray a variety of roles in the plays.
Audiences can expect a “truly ‘Pinteresque’ performance”; ‘Pinteresque’ is a term in The Oxford English Dictionary referring to unnerving and unpredictable environments, and menacing atmospheres, a trademark of all Harold Pinter plays.
“Pinter’s plays intrigue actors because they feature colloquial repetitive language and illogical syntax of ordinary speech; yet at the same time they are as carefully balanced as musical scores. His characters’ motives are often obscure and their backgrounds indefinite which can also be fascinating for actors and audiences alike,” Poole says.
Meteor Theatre, 1 Victoria St, Hamilton
2, 3 & 4 May2019 @ 7.30pm
5 & 7 May 2019 @ 6pm
Tickets and more information can be found at www.themeteor.co.nz
That's All (1964)
Kendra Boyle & Mandy Faulkner
Mrs A and Mrs B chatter about a third party who used to come around on Wednesdays, but changed to Thursdays. This sketch about the impact of altering the smallest of weekly routines treats us to Pinter's mastery of conversational inconsequentialities.
David Simes & Conor Maxwell
Imagine what life would be like if you owned one or more umbrellas.
Jack Knowles & James Smith
Two powerful businessmen argue about the exact figure.
Mountain Language (1988)
Missy Mooney, Julianne Boyle, Clive Lamdin, David Simes, Richard Homan, Liam Hinton, James Smith, Tycho Smith, Kendra Boyle, Mandy Faulkner, Christina Wilson.
Without specifying place or political context, Mountain Language begins with women waiting outside a prison to see their husbands and family. The outlawing of 'mountain language' in favour of the language of the 'capital' stands as a metaphor for the treatment of dissidents everywhere.
Phil Dalzie & Julianne Boyle
A married couple take a poetic, intense and satisfying meander down memory lane.
That's Your Trouble (1964)
Liam Hinton & Jack Knowles
Two men in a park argue about whether another man carrying a sandwich board has a headache or a back or leg ache.
Party Time (1991)
Conor Maxwell, David Lumsden, Kendra Boyle, Mandy Faulkner, Christina Wilson, Missy Mooney, Richard Homan, Phil Dalziel, Jack Knowles, Tycho Smith
The streets are blockaded outside Gavin's upmarket flat, the result of a military occupation. Inside Gavin hosts a party where the machinations between the guests are as potent and suffocating as any wider social upheaval.
Creative & Production Team:
Director & Production Manager: Gaye Poole
Stage manager: Kelly Petersen
Lighting designer: Logan Cook
Lighting operator: Tom Smith
Production assistants: Lily Empson & Megan Goldsman
Stage management mentor: Missy Mooney
Props: Lily Empson
Rehearsal Photographer: Megan Goldsman
Graphic designer: Jack Knowles
Marketing & Promotion: Hannah Mooney, Gaye Poole, David Simes.
A multiple treat
Review by Gail Pittaway 03rd May 2019
By coincidence I was given a copy of Antonia Fraser’s memoir of her life with Harold Pinter, for Christmas. Must you go? is the title, coming from Pinter’s words to her at a party which began their affair and led to 34 years together. Based on her diaries from 1974-2008, what stands out most is what a passionate and volatile person Pinter could be. And what a romantic soul he was, filling up their new house with flowers in every room, writing her beautiful poems. He wanted, she says, to be recognised as a poet and playwright.
The other striking fact is how busy Pinter was in the theatre, in London and New York in particular, even while still writing plays. He was involved in directing others’ plays and writing screenplays as well. What was most important to him for productions of his own plays was the casting – and Fraser names many of the actors, some of whom, such as Michael Gambon and Penelope Wilton, are still active in the job.
What a pleasure then to get to see seven of Pinter’s shorter plays performed by Carving In Ice theatre company and to see that Gaye Poole has worked so thoroughly with her perfectly cast actors that each piece is a gem. From hilarious two-handers such as ‘That’s All’, and ‘Umbrellas’, with Pinter’s characteristic meandering repetitive lines looping around the characters, to some of the larger, more political works, including ‘Mountain Language’ and ‘Precisely’ in which Pinter exposes the mindless bullying by oppressors and the ruling classes, the range is wide and the production never wavers. And all in under two hours!
With a fine ensemble of 15 actors, Poole has selected and programmed the pieces thoughtfully to arc our interest and focus from the ridiculous to the sublime and back again. There’s plenty of comedy but always with the underlying challenge that is called ‘Pinteresque’: the uncertainty of our relations with each other, let alone ourselves.
Missy Mooney and Richard Homan give fine performances which explore the power play between people very well, and the satisfactory pairing of Julianne Boyle and Phil Daziel in ‘Night’ is a highlight of the production, bringing a sigh of pleasure from the audience on opening night. Kendra Boyle, Christina Wilson, Liam Hinton, Jack Knowles and David Simes do double duty in several pieces, showing versatility in characterisation and there’s a group of more experienced actors, Clive Lamdin, David Lumsden and Mandy Faulkner to further enrich the quality of scenes.
The longer piece, ‘Party Time’, is a brilliant finale choice, drawing on the energy of Conor Maxwell, whose ebullient Bovver Boy act compensates for the odd lapse in accent, and the edgy charm of Mandy Faulkner, to generate unease over whatever civil unrest and military occupation might be happening outside the flat where a party is taking place.
It’s great to see ‘Carving in Ice’ company working in the Meteor Theatre and to be given the multiple treat of seeing so many Pinter plays in one sitting and seeing them done so well.
Copyright © belongs to the reviewer