Holden Street Theatres – The Studio, Sun 18 Feb.
[THEATRE – UK]
Amidst all the frivolity of the Adelaide Fringe there are also pockets of serious theatre available. Borders by Henry Naylor gives an opportunity to confront what is really happening in the world, particularly in the Middle East. Borders can be contrived things that we vote for or fight for, but instead of including everyone there are usually winners and losers.
This year sees the return of Avital Lvova, who gave such a riveting performance as Rehana in last year’s Angel by Henry Naylor as a female sniper in war torn Syria. This time the Syrian theme continues, but as Nameless she is living a risky life as an anti-government graffiti artist. Once again her performance is intense and nuanced.
Graham O’Mara as Sebastian is an English photographer who is offered a rare opportunity by his journalist hero to meet and photograph Osama Bin Laden. But having earned some credibility for this photo, he finds the money to be earned from celebrity photo-shoots more enticing. The shallowness of this world creates room for plenty of anti-celebrity jokes to bring laughs and lighten the script. But there are also moments lamenting the loss of serious journalism to PR puff pieces.
There is no interaction between the two characters – rather a continual series of short monologues allow us to compare and contrast their individual situations. Being in the right place at the right time vs being in a terrible place. With almost no props the actors rely on the slightest gesture or facial expression to keep the audience on the edge of their seats. The tears on the faces of some audience members confirm that this has been a truly moving experience.
I now make it a ritual to see whatever Henry Naylor is presenting at the Adelaide Fringe. Borders by Henry Naylor at Holden Street Theatres is this year’s compelling offering.
Borders by Henry Naylor continues at Holden Street Theatres – The Studio, at various times, Sun 18 Mar.
Book at FringeTIX on 1300 621 255 or adelaidefringe.com.au. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.
Images courtesy of Steve Ullathorne