Thin Air

Blarney Stone Room, Molly Malones, Wellington

22/02/2011 - 26/02/2011

THE BOX, Buick St, Petone, Wellington

01/03/2011 - 05/03/2011

NZ Fringe Festival 2011

Production Details

A search for LOVE in Thin Air . . .

Thin Air is a new kiwi comedy about looking for LOVE in all the right and wrong places! A charming mix of Reality Bites, Easy A, and Scarfies, Thin Air is bringing intimate theatre to Molly’s, Wellington and The Box, Petone. 

New to town and starting Uni, Sam meets two likely lads, Jay and Simon, when they come to her aid at a flat party.

Sam falls for Jay, but LOVE turns out to be much more elusive and fragile than certain popular films had led either of them to believe. “Where’s the bit where all the drama stops, and I get to live happily ever after?” 

If a broken heart feels like the world is falling apart, and the ending of all things is a mathematical certainty, what can you truly hold onto? 

“I am very excited to be working with three extremely talented and passionate young up-and-coming Wellington actors.” Says director Tabitha Arthur. “They have so much energy and have really fallen in love with their characters. This production will be wonderfully moving and funny, biting and real. I can’t wait for the audience to experience it”. 

“What grabbed me with the script, was the completely honest nature of the dialogue. I felt a connection with each of the characters, and I felt a need to know more; I wanted to get to know each of them, and their unique relationships with each other; to help them find their way through their pain and frustration to the other side”. 


22-26 February, 7.30pm 
Wellington Season
Blarney Stone Room, Molly Malones, Courtenay Place
1-5 March, 7.30pm
Hutt Season 
The Box, Petone
Tickets available from
$16 waged, $13 concession, $11 fringe Card
Online booking fee may apply. Door sales available (cash only) 

Starring: Andrew Goddard, Angela Fitzharris and Gary Millar 

Fears and phobias stir up a coming tempest

Review by Ewen Coleman [Reproduced with permission of Fairfax Media] 01st Mar 2011

The intimacy of the top floor bar at Molly Malone’s is an ideal setting for a play about intimacy and love. [Note: a second season opens at The Box, Buick St Petone, 1 March – ed.]  

Thin Air by Seamus Arnel is a densely written piece full of modern idiom and references to films and music that looks at the various forms that love can take in a developing relationship, especially when one of those involved brings a whole load of baggage into the relationship. 

Jay (Gary Miller) and Simon (Andrew Goddard) are students taking drama studies at Waikato University. It is the beginning of the year and they are involved with the annual summer Shakespeare production of the Tempest – the title of the play is from one of Prospero’s speeches.

Enter first-time student Sam (Angela Fitzharris), who hits on Jay. Through lots of student type banter including definitions of love from classical Greek to modern films, the relationship grows. Jay become more sensitive and caring while Simon remains outwardly jocular and unsympathetic. However aspects of Sam’s past intrude with what could be disastrous results bringing the play to a heartfelt and heady climax. 

Fortunately, the script avoids much of the usual boy meets girl clichés and brings new and unsightly aspects to love and relationships.

Under Tabitha Arthur’s assured and strong direction the production is played with pace and energy and comes across as real and believable. Fitzharris unburdens the character of Sam with sensitivity and feeling, making the character real and believable. Miller plays the part of Jay trying to understand what is going on with comparison.

As a foil to Sam and Jay, Goddard’s Simon is all blustering drunken rhetoric yet the character also has issues which Goddard conveys with conviction making this a great production from a first time playwright.
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Thoroughly developed characters

Review by Priyanka Bhonsule (Hutt News) 23rd Feb 2011

The small audience in the small Blarney Stone Room at Molly Malone’s were treated to an enthusiastic production, with three teenagers trying to answer difficult questions about love.

Sam (Angela Fitzharris) has escaped from her claustrophobic small-town home to Waikato University (“far enough not to be able to visit every weekend”), where she meets Jay and Simon – two Drama students who lampoon their future professions as much as they revere it.

Jay (Gary Miller) falls for Sam soon after, and though hesitant about opening herself up to a new relationship, the two are soon officially a couple. However, it’s not all smooth sailing as the friendship between Jay and freewheeling Simon (Andrew Goddard) soon causes tension between the couple while Sam and Jay’s coupledom starts grating on Simon. 

The different personalities of each actor come through really well – an acknowledgment of thorough character development. Jay and Sam are probably like a couple we all know – completely contrasting in their outlook in life but, as young love often does, willing to put their differences aside to be together. 

Jay is laidback, taking life as it comes yet eager to be let into Sam’s life – Miller does a great job in this role, with an easy smile, good timing and physical acting that elicits most of the laughs on the night.

Fitzharris too portrays the restrained Sam well, a character whose past haunts her and leads her to build a wall around herself to keep everyone out. She reverts to facts and figures in most situations, preferring to deal with things practically rather than let her emotions show through.

Goddard is excellent in his role as Simon, the product of a family on the move, forced to develop a loud, brash personality to get noticed. Simon is confident on the outside, fragile on the inside, again with a family past that weighs on his mind and Goddard renders him well. 

For a low-budget Fringe production (I’m assuming) in a tiny space, the production values aren’t lost, with light and sound design and operation on the night going flawlessly. However, get there early to secure seats and if you’re short (like me) stick to the front two rows – the seats are like church pews and if stuck behind a tall person you will have to keep ducking between or over people’s heads to see. 
For more production details, click on the title above. Go to Home page to see other Reviews, recent Comments and Forum postings (under Chat Back), and News. 


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