THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET
THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
The Phuket News Novosti Phuket Khao Phuket

Login | Create Account | Search


Theatrix group at peak performance with The 39 Steps

Mention ‘am-dram’ – or ‘ama­teur dramatics’ – and it’s not unusual to see people recoil, haunted by memo­ries of second-rate panto­mimes by inflated directors in need of a gentle reminder that they’re in a cold village hall in rural England, not the wings of a West End theatre.

ArtEntertainment
By Amy Bryant

Monday 17 June 2019, 02:00PM


However, Theatrix, Phuket’s vibrant theatre group, prove that it’s time this stereotype died a slow, dramatic, on-stage death with their re­cent production of The 39 Steps.

The collective CV of the cast attests to how the line dividing professional and amateur theatre is becoming in­creasingly blurred. Their appearances on stage and on screen, in prestigious theatres and in well-loved films and TV series, span decades and continents. All this came together for two sold-out nights at creative arts hub Underwood Art Factory on June 1 and 2.

The 39 Steps is actor and playwright Patrick Barlow’s 2005 parody adapta­tion of John Buchan’s 1915 spy thriller novel and Alfred Hitchcock’s 1935 film of the same name. The plot follows protagonist Richard Hannay as he trav­erses Scotland to avoid being framed for a murder he didn’t commit while also at­tempting to take down the 39 Steps, an organisation of spies plotting to reveal British state secrets.

Audiences are transported to the Scottish Highlands by an inventive shadow puppetry display. The accents don’t quite make it so far north but that quickly becomes part of the fun. The Underwood family do a fantastic job in recreating a Flying Scotsman-style train carriage that nearly fills the length of the stage and even gently rocks as it chugs along imaginary tracks.

With just four actors playing a total of 30 characters, even playing multiple roles in the same scene, this is Theatrix’s most ambitious and chal­lenging performance to date for actors and technical crew alike. Remarkably, they pull off lightning-quick character, costume, prop, light and sound changes without a hitch. What was that about amateur theatre…?

Thanyapura Football

The plot moves at the same pace, swinging pendulously between moments of edge-of-your-seat suspense and laugh-out-loud madcap hilarity. The venue is in one moment frozen in deathly silence and in another erupting in raucous laughter. Such juxtaposition has earned the play the tagline ‘Alfred Hitchcock meets Monty Python’. The Theatrix offering leans closer to the latter, es­pecially during the train scene which sees actors Joel Adams and Jesse Todd – Clown 1 and 2 – play a conductor, a policeman and countless passengers, ef­fortlessly switching hats and spinning across the stage as they do so. They capture the contained chaos of Python perfectly and are rightly rewarded with a huge round of applause.

Tony Edwards, who plays Richard Hannay, is the only actor to take on one singular role and in that way offers the audience some consistency. He is the rock of the performance – and indeed portrays the character’s sometimes stony allure – as pandemonium unfolds around him. His monologues are well-delivered and become the most poignant moments of the show.

Simona Grumezea is a similarly powerful on-stage presence, not only as the seductive spy Annabella Smith – the catalyst for Richard’s plight – but as the more timid, sheltered Scottish farmer’s wife Margaret too. Her portrayal of An­nabella is convincing; a thick, enigmatic accent sets the scene for espionage.

Plans are in place to bring The 39 Steps back later this year. Be sure to get a ticket. Comedy, drama, suspense and intrigue are only a step away.

For more information, visit www.facebook.com/TheatrixGroup and the39stepsphuket.com or email Joel at theatrixphuket@gmail.com

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

CAPTCHA

Be the first to comment.

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
German tourist killed, struck by parasail speedboat propeller, off Kamala

Cops were busy taking photos but failed to notice the Korean wedding photographers of which there we...(Read More)


Phuket airport suffers blackout as truck slams power pole, flights not affected

No mention of the standard "investigation" of the reckless fool that either fell asleep, w...(Read More)


Cambodia to ban elephant rides at Angkor temples, Paris bans circus elephants

Great that now 1 asian country takes up the thinking that elephants are no scooters/motorbikes to si...(Read More)


Police release initial report into Phuket deadly building collapse

Great to see that the police are now qualified structural engineers on top of everything else. 24 hr...(Read More)


Speedboat destroyed as garbage pile fire spreads near homes

A lesson 'expensively' learned. Never have garbage piles, near houses, car's, boats. A...(Read More)


Police release initial report into Phuket deadly building collapse

The police major talked to much and to fast as a non professional about construction work. They alw...(Read More)


Chinese ‘tourists’ arrested in Phuket for illegally operating foreign exchange online

Thailand hardly has jurisdiction regarding foreigners working online. ...(Read More)


Phuket airport suffers blackout as truck slams power pole, flights not affected

A 10 wheel truck diver, speeding faster than he can think ( think?) and survived the heavy impact. ...(Read More)


Five-metre python caught in Wichit, residents worry over missing cats

Worry not, as python skin fetches about $50 USD per meter- with longer intact skins netting eve...(Read More)


Prawit warns Thanathorn: 'No protests'

In a democratic country, not ruled by generals, is it normal to protest in peace in the streets. Bar...(Read More)