Old School: Review of Return Fire Productions’ Senior Moments
One may not be able to recognise the Glen Street Theatre in its present state of upgrade, but this hideaway theatre in Belrose is currently housing Senior Moments, a comedy revue for the octogenarian. As a young up and go getter, I was keen to see what the fuss was all about. And it did not disappoint.
Return Fire Productions treats us to a 90 minute tennis-balls-on-the-walker romp that places us all firmly in the firing line with the wonderful senior cast’s views about ‘kids these days’, and ‘why the world has gone wrong’ locked and loaded, and their shaky fingers on the trigger. It takes the form of a classic comedy revue, which means minimal props, little costume and a whole lot of sketches. It harks back to simpler times (Beyond the Fringe anyone?) and reminds us of how satisfying a revue can be. The majority of scripts were well conceived with good, clear punch lines, though on occasion writers Angus Fitzsimons and Kevin Brumpton made sketches a few lines too long. The only sketch that fell slightly by the way side was “The Finders”, though it appeared to be a late addition and as such, was under rehearsed (the performers were still on script). Of course, the overwhelming majority of the show was hilarious, with a particularly good set of voice over sketches. The key to all revue comedy is well researched and well referenced material, which we got in spades (the cure to polio is “to walk it off”, apparently).
The entire cast did a top notch job, with particular stand out performances from Penny Cook and John Derum – their comic timing was consistently excellent. Benita Collings is always a tiny bundle of joy, and is especially endearing during her Play School take-off. Some great moments were also produced by the silvery Lex Marinos and old timer Russell Newman. The token ‘young performers’, Nicola Parry and Christian Barratt-Hill brought stability and flavour to the show, with the ancient and quirky pianist Geoff Harvey assisting during song parodies.
If the show were to receive any criticism, it would be that the performers suffered from opening night nerves (perhaps due to a short rehearsal period?). With this in mind, it would be a great privilege to see the show on closing night. Senior Moments bills itself as a ‘deliciously funny and fresh collection of comic senior moments, sketches and songs performed by a seriously funny cast who are old enough to know better’ – and it delivers the goods. Light-hearted, fun and a little bit naughty, audiences young and old will enjoy this show, and I urge everyone to get tickets if they can.
Senior Moments is playing at the Glen Street Theatre from May 26 to May 29. For more information and tickets please visit http://www.seniormomentsshow.com.au/.