Co West, Wed Mar 4
In a bar down a dark alley on the outer reaches of the Fringe there is a band playing rollicking drinking songs while sitting across the back of what appears to be a stage. Terry Bradford, Stuart Day, Richard Tonkin, Jennifer DeGrassi and Steve Fleming set the mood and the mood is good. Is this just a gig?
But no, a tramp pushing a shopping trolley laden with assorted debris makes his way noisily from the back of room and begins to address the audience. This teeters between humorous and incoherent, definitely adding some chaos, but making us a little nervous about where this story is going.
A young man gets up to sing a song with the band and the story proper begins. It turns out Michael is the singer in a band passing through town and his performance attracts the amorous advances of Jess, one of the town girls. The results of this one night stand form the basis for the rest of the story, which is acted out in various parts of the room, requiring a bit of twisting and turning from the audience to follow the action. Jess moves through a series of unsuccessful relationships, one with her employer Mr Campbell, and one producing a daughter Rafaella (Riff Raff) and it is the interaction between these four characters that becomes the stuff of Folk Opera.
The songs are excellent and are performed with panache. The acting is strong and has us believing the dreams and flaws of each of the characters. They are familiar to us, but you’d have to hope that this is not the love life of all ordinary people. Some tightening up of the role of the narrator will help this production become the popular hit it deserves to be.
The Love Life Of The Ordinary continues at Co West until Sun Mar 15.
Book at FringeTIX on 1300 621 255 or adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.