Luna Park

When reading the marketing blurb for Luna Park, I must confess I wasn't entirely sure what to expect. Billed as “a coming of age reverie presented in the style of magical realism through physical theatre”, I was intrigued (...if a little baffled). However, I'm pleased to say that the show - exploring the lives of immigrants living in New York around the turn of the twentieth century - was not only hugely accessible, but hugely successful.

A play with excellent performances, slick choreography and fantastic set design

Eugenia Caruso, Tom Slatter and Jesse Rutherford are all highly competent actors who worked wonderfully as an ensemble. The character relationships they portrayed were always engaging and believable due to the fantastic connection existing between the three. I'd like to offer particular praise to Rutherford who played multiple roles throughout the course of the play; his use of voice was incredible and did a fantastic job of distinguishing his different characters.

The choreographed sequences were also wonderfully slick and the Director, Hattie Coupe, and Movement Director, Steffany George, should be applauded for the part they played in creating these. Props were used intelligently in these sequences as a means of conveying location: a standout moment being when Caruso and Slatter walked slowly around in a circle, gently raising and lowering drying racks to mimic the experience of characters riding a carousel. Ideas like these were simple yet effective and helped to bolster audience engagement.

Where the show fell a little short was in its rather abrupt ending. The deterioration of a marriage between two characters was illustrated solely through a silent montage lasting around a minute or so. Consequently, by the play's end I failed to grasp what it was that had caused this marriage to dissolve. Whether this was a fault with the original script or the way in which it was edited for its Fringe run, however, I cannot tell.

Certainly, the show was a success and if you want to see a play with excellent performances, slick choreography and fantastic set design, then look no further. Luna Park won't disappoint.  

Reviews by Alan Stewart

Assembly George Square Studios

Save + Quit

★★★★
Paradise in The Vault

Howie the Rookie

★★★
Spotlites

Chinese Women’s Whispers

★★★
Bedlam Theatre

Stack

★★★★
Pleasance Courtyard

We Live by the Sea

★★★
Zoo Southside

Luna Park

★★★★

Performances

Location

The Blurb

It's Delmore's 21st birthday in the harshest winter of the Great Depression. There’s no cake on the table. That night his dreams treat him to a magical adventure where he’s forced to face his past under the dizzying lights of Coney Island’s amusement park. Luna Park is a visually captivating, coming of age reverie presented in the style of magical realism through physical theatre. An elegiac look at the American past and the immigrant experience of the 1930s. Funny and sizzling with energy, this performance brings to life a forgotten play by Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Donald Margulies.