Walking into NO VACANCY, the bare minimalistic gallery is the perfect setting for an underground edgy production. A dark and empty space for sharing secrets and telling lies, the venue on the edge of Melbourne's QV sets the tone for the evenings' performance of EIGHT.
Written by acclaimed UK playwright Ella Hickson, the young writer wrote the eight monologues of the title in her final year at Edinburgh University and hasn't stopped since.
Delving into the emotions and the apathy of a generation, Hickson looks into the lives of the ordinary to find the extraordinary in a touching, disturbing and clever piece, full of all the emotions often left bubbling beneath the surface of the psyche.
Directed by Adam Spellicy, the eight incredible actors take on Hickson's words with intensity and a clear understanding of the text. From Tom Dent's broken soldier to Liza Dennis' high class hooker and defender of men, the play takes the audience on an emotional journey that twists through every aspect of personality and comes out the other end none the wiser.
Coming of age tales, the pain of hindsight and the concept of freedom are all exposed within Hickson's piece and she weaves a story so intricate and personal that it is almost a voyeuristic experience through your own emotional being.
Each actor brings a story more captivating and riveting than the last, from being spared death through sheer dumb luck and the repercussions of having to live that life, to being a modern day Mary, torn between freedom and faith, each actor possesses a remarkable skill to move an audience with Hickson's words.
EIGHT will leave you wondering at the human minds' capacity for love, hate, deception and redemption. What EIGHT shows us is that to be capable of all these things is to make us human and that to be human may just be the best we can do.
Exhibit A: Theatre presents
by Ella Hickson
Directed by Adam Spellicy
Venue: No Vacancy Gallery, QV, Jane Bell Lane, Melbourne, VIC
Dates: 21 June – 1 July, 2012
Tickets: $17 – $22