Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

BWW Review: SEASON'S GREETINGS at Domain Theatre, Marion Cultural Centre

BWW Review: SEASON'S GREETINGS at Domain Theatre, Marion Cultural CentreReviewed by Barry Lenny, Friday 3rd November 2017.

Galleon's final production for the year is an Alan Ayckbourn's 1980 comedy, Season's Greetings, directed by Kym Clayton. Clayton has assembled a great cast, including some regular Galleon favourites, and created a well-paced production that keeps the laughs coming from start to finish.

Belinda and Neville have invited the entire family and a few friends over for Christmas. If you have ever seen anything by Ayckbourn then you will not need to be told that it is a highly dysfunctional family, and that anything that can go wrong, will go wrong, with enormous hilarity.

Scott Battersby and Mari Nield play Neville and Belinda. Neville is interested in anything, other than his wife, and loves to tinker in his shed, taking great interest in his remote control for the Christmas tree, lights, and music, and in repairing a broken toy, while she tries to hold everything together over the few days against all odds. Battersby pulls in the laughs as Neville, trying to avoid anything to do with the Christmas celebrations, and any of the guests, other than Eddie, and Nield keeps us laughing at Belinda's oft thwarted efforts to keep things on track and dampen any conflicts.

Phyllis, played by Joanne St Clair, is permanently tipsy, and makes a mess of the kitchen and the food, while her incompetent doctor husband, Bernard, whose sole focus is his overly complex annual puppet show, the bane of everybody else's Christmas, is played by Brian Godfrey. St Clair convincingly portrays her character as heading well on the way to being inebriated, without resorting to caricature, and Godfrey is very funny as a man who is a failure at everything, clinging to his mistaken belief that his puppets shows are loved by all, his ultimate failure. The 'business' of his rehearsal of the show is an hilarious disaster, although his shaky dialogue could use some tightening.

Lindsay Dunn plays Uncle Harvey, the paranoid ex-security guard, television addict, and grumpy old man who is descending into madness. If Harvey didn't get jailed or sectioned soon after the events of this play I, for one, would be very surprised. Dunn neatly carries off the difficult trick of playing a thoroughly unpleasant character and still making him laughable.

Eddie, a friend of Neville who shares his passion for tinkering, and his wife, Pattie, are the imminently expectant parents, played by Adrian Heness and Charlotte Batty. Heness provides plenty of laughs in his efforts to avoid anything to do with the fact that his wife is about to have a baby, and Batty doubles the laughs in her attempts to engage him on anything to do with their relationship.

Simon Lancione plays the writer, Clive, who has been invited as he is the close friend of Rachel, Belinda's spinster sister, played by Maxine Grubel. Missing one another in transit, he arrives while she is going to the station to collect him and he is admitted by Belinda, resulting in lust at first sight. Lancione draws on all of the humorous situations and misunderstandings to ensure that he gets his full share of the laughter.

Clayton's multi-room set is cleverly created using walls only a single brick in height to form the various rooms, relying on the cast and the audience to imagine them as solid, with assistance from the lighting design. This is another fun show from Galleon that will please audiences and, don't forget, you can take a supper with you and purchase drinks from the canteen/bar.

Featured on Stage Door

Shoutouts, Classes, and More from Your Favorite Broadway Stars

Related Articles View More Australia - Adelaide Stories

From This Author Barry Lenny