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You Talkin' to Me? | Ensemble Theatre
Written by James Waites   
Sunday, 13 April 2008 21:50
You Talkin’ to Me? | Ensemble TheatreLeft - Catherine Moore & Jamie Oxenbould. Cover - Jamie Oxenbould. Photos - Steve Lunam

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Sometimes a show comes along that is just so much fun all you can suggest is that people looking for laugh go along and see it.

This fabulous night out - simple and joyful - began as a light-hearted book about the adventures of a cabbie during the Olympics, called You Talking To Me? The book’s ambitions went a bit further than that. Author Anthony Sharwood was an up-and-coming journo denied official access to cover the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. So Sharwood upped the anti. He trained for a taxi-driver’s license, succeeded on the brink of the Games, and wrote an account of life in Sydney during those surreal sunny heady few weeks through a taxi driver’s eyes.

Director Mark Kilmurry does a wonderful job eliciting a hilarious performance from Jamie Oxenbould as the driver. And Oxenbould himself is a joy to watch as he transmogrifies effortlessly from one extreme client-type to another. The text captures all the moments that made those weeks special and will bring particular delight to anyone who was in Sydney during that time.

Sharwood renames himself Andy for the story version and his suffering girlfriend of the time, sweetly played by Catherine Moore, is known as Isabella. There is of course a happy ending!

Not only has the book now been transformed into a most entertaining night out that I’m sure will assume ‘hit’ status, Sharwood himself went on to ‘officially’ cover the next Games and his career as a journalist has since truly taken off.


Ensemble Theatre
You Talkin’ to Me?

Diary of an Olympic Cabbie

From the novel by Anthony Sharwood
Adapted for the stage by Mark Kilmurry

Venue: Ensemble Theatre, 78 McDougall Street, Kirribilli, NSW
Dates: Previews: April 2 - 8, opening night Wed 9 April, season to 22 May, 2008
Times: check website, click on calendar
Prices: $38 - $62 (booking charges may apply)
Bookings: 02 9929 0644 or www.ensemble.com.au  



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I meant to make a note of the work of Sophie Cunnngham while editor at Allen & Unwin. Not only You Talkin' To Me, but a whole group of very interestng books that were ceated from a auto/semiautobograpical premise. Including, as you will see in the list below, Tim Conigrave's Holding The Man.

Sophie is now editor of Meanjin - a very exciting appointment

Unfolding: the story of the ANZ AIDs Quilt Project ? Ainslie Yardley with
Kim Langley

I was a Teenage Fascist ? David Greason

Holding the Man ? Timothy Conigrave

Gatton Man ? Merv Lilley

Sadness ? William Yang

Upington ? Andrea Durbach

Naomi's Story: A baby's journey, a father's diary ? Jon Casmir

Off the Rails: The Pauline Hanson Trip ? Margo Kingston

Huckstepp ? John Dale

Dastgah: A head Trip ? Mark Mordue

Snake Dreaming ? Roberta Sykes

Positive - David Menadue

James Waites
james_waites , April 14, 2008

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