Three Strikes : CultureHUB Review
Shot Glass Theatre – The Dark Horse 05 May ’15
It’s hard to think of a bar more perfect than the Dark Horse for Shotglass Theatre to perform their trademark bar theatrics. As part of the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival, they presented Three Strikes, a trio of character driven short stories.
The first was an entrancing monologue of a demure, bored housewife trapped by the monotony of a loveless marriage, seemingly destined to come to a nutty ending. With the absence of a stage, the actress was placed in the central bar area. The intimate setting and excellent acoustics allowed us drinkers to feel fully engaged in what became a dark and deviant comedic diatribe.
This was shortly followed by Blow Dry Barry, a Mace store hipster pseudo-intellectual obsessive still lodging with his mother. Probably the most effective of the three skits, Barry’s story was told with a contrasting mixture of arrogance and nervousness, the actor deftly gave the character an expressive stammer and neurotic stare which really brought life to the persona.
The final story was one Shotglass had told before, in their ghost story “Voices Off”. Fraudulent ghost whisperer Margery Cakebread’s cold reading had punch, being so close to the crowd that the actress could actually reach out and lay hands upon audience member’s heads, call out well placed actors amongst them and dish out verbal abuse. In the candle lit centre of the bar this piece was much more in your face than past performances and benefitted immensely from its transferral from stage to bar floor. With her “assistant” perched upon the bar, waiting for his moment to shine, there was a sense of intrigue. When his big revelation came, he was able to draw a lot more laughs from the audience. Ultimately I’d like to see Shotglass utilize bar environments like this one a lot more. I see a lot of potential for a murder mystery night or something similar to enhance audience participation.