August 2009

We were privileged to see another entertaining night of new work at Crash Test Drama on Monday August 10. There were some poignant moments and plenty of laughter from the 9 plays read.

Two plays were unlucky not to be in the money as they polled the most audience votes on the night but were unfortunately penalised due to running overtime.

Paul Rook’s “Cut Off” scored well with the audience with direction from Stephen Carnell and featured strong performances from Alice Keohavong, Gerry Sont and Christine Morel.

Chris Lewis and Graeme Yates were brilliant as Robert De Niro and Al Pacino in Steven McGrath’s hilarious “Godfathers” directed by Sadashivam Rao.

This is a good lesson to all writers as Short and Sweet are very strict on the time rule. A lot of positive feedback for Paul and Steve and gives them a chance to do a re-write before submitting to Short and Sweet.

The two plays taking out the money prizes were runner up “Something to do with Toads” by Robert Allan; a very funny exploration of a couple experimenting with drugs and finely performed by Alastair Buchanan, Fleur Beaupert and directed by Katherine Davis.

The winner of the audience prize on the night was a most entertaining reading of Robert Luxford’s “Nuns” by Amanda Stephens Lee, Maite Arriaga and Celia Kelly with direction from Uma Kali Shakti; when three Nuns nip out for a smoke we discover the real meaning behind habits, vows and videotape.

Judge Allan Walpole was tormented by yet another very tough choice. His winners were:

BEST PLAY: “Just six minutes to go” cleverly written and directed by Craig Delahoy and starring Paul Paulakis, Matt Thompson and Jess Norman. The time for “Just six minutes to go” came in at 5 minutes 15 seconds proving that both time is irrelevant in good comedy and also that Craig needs a new watch.

BEST ACTRESS: Alice Keohavong in “ Cut Off”

BEST ACTOR: Graham Yates in “Godfathers”

RUNNER UP BEST ACTRESS: Jess Norman in “Just six minutes to go”

RUNNER UP BEST ACTOR: Chris Lewis in “Godfathers”

ALEX BROUN’S PLAYWRIGHT ENCOURAGEMENT AWARD: Stephen Graham for “The Dedication”

Congratulations to all, particularly “Nuns” and “Just six minutes to go” who go through to the Crash Test final on December 14. And thanks to Alex Broun for coming along to lend his support.

Thank you to all actors, writers and directors involved and especially the audience who came out to see some very entertaining, original and inexpensive theatre!
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