The Little Dog Laughed | Red Stitch Actors TheatreLeft - Martin Sharpe & Tom Wren. Cover - Tom Wren & Kat Stewart. Photos - Jodie Hutchinson

is a very good looking movie actor whose star is on the rise. Diane is his tough manager, taking care of all the details in his career and in his life. Alex is a young, attractive man working as a male prostitute - to pay the bills. Ellen is Alex’s sort-of girlfriend.

Late one night while in New York for an awards ceremony, Mitchell calls for a rent boy and Alex turns up. Two worlds and four separate lives collide that night.

Author Douglas Carter-Beane has created a multi-layered story rich in insight and observations. More than a tale of sexual ambiguity and immoral values, Little Dog is scathing in its attack of Hollywood stereotypes and double standards, while at the same time looks at the complex human issues of people desperate to connect.

This very witty and often hilarious play will have you roaring with laughter one moment only to be moved by a character’s attempt to find love and happiness in a world where disappointment and selfishness prevail.

Guest actor Tom Wren does a great job with the self-obsessed Mitchell. Martin Sharpe is touching as the younger Alex, street-wise beyond his years. His cockiness always ready to hide his insecurities and issues of trust. Ella Caldwell handles the lesser role of Ellen very well, creating an interesting, likeable character.

The role of Diane however, is written for a skilled performer who has the task of not only driving the play but of also narrating some of the action, all the while spitting out some of the funniest, bitchiest lines. Kat Stewart is terrific in the role. As a performer she seizes the opportunity to play a great part and displays fine comic timing.

Director David Bell makes a welcome debut with the company and keeps the look and feel of the production on the right level.

While they may have been a few stumbles on opening night, this terrific piece of theatre deserves support and will be even better as the season progresses.

Yet again Red Stitch has proved that it can make consistently high standards of choice both with its programming and casting.    

Red Stitch Actors Theatre presents
by Douglas Carter-Beane

Venue: Red Stitch Actors Theatre, rear 2 Chapel St, St Kilda East (opp Astor)
Dates: Fri October 19 – Sat November 17 ($18 previews Wed 17 and Thurs 18 October)
Times: Wed – Sat 8pm, Sun 6.30pm
Bookings: (discounted tix) or on 03 9533 8083 @ $30/20

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