Bite-Sized: Sunday Lunch Hour Menu
  • By Tim Earl
  • |
  • 31st May 2008
  • |
  • ★★★★

A collection of six 10-minute plays all presented in an hour. An ambitious project from Bite-Size, but one they pulled off admirably with quick-fire presentation, and rapid changes from one mood to another. With no more staging than table and chairs, and a prop or two, each play created its own mood with great scripts and great acting.

The Cowgirl of Wild, Wild, West St. dreams of escaping her dull existence. Her sad fate is frequently reinforced when she drifts off to sleep and a railway announcer recites the places that the sad train of her life will stop.

In Beige Tea, a father has testified to his daughter’s insanity as the only way to keep her out of jail, but now he wants her out of his house. This seems harsh until we find out she killed her mother, finally acting after a lifetime of abuse, during which her father could only stand by and make tea.

In Tell Someone Who Cares, Mandy and Sandy meet for lunch and talk small, but reveal their big thoughts to the audience in theatrical asides. This convention is skilfully subverted when one character explains it to the other, who then uses it with even more biting effect.

Crimestoppers jazzes up a heavyweight story in Aussie soap-style, paradoxically adding to the impact.

Secret Life of a Joke concerns the break-up of a comedian and his depressed wife. The comedian’s slick patter simultaneously emphasise his heartless attitude to his wife, and counterpoints her down-trodden pleadings.

In Family 2.0, a husband turns up unannounced in another man’s home and takes over his wife and family. All seems well at first, the beautiful wife responds to his gifts, the kids accept him, and even the arrival of her real husband can’t ruin it - when he is rejected, he becomes the family dog. However, it soon turns sour when the new dream family develop all the annoying habits of his old one, and he is forced to leave again.

There is skilful writing and acting all-round in this collection of gems, but the stars of the show are Mandy and Sandy, and Family 2.0.

Reviews by Tim Earl

A Fistful of Snow

★★★★★

Bane

★★★★★

Oedipus

★★

4:48 Psychosis

★★★

The Silents

★★★★

The Blurb

Cella at Sanctuary Café, 4, 11, 18, 25 May 12.30 pm