|Grayson Woodham, Joel Horwood and Lewis Macdonald in Holding the Man|
Holding the Man.
Based on the book by Timothy Conigrave and adapted for the stage by Tommy Murphy. Directed by Jarrad West. Assistant Director Hannah Lance. Stage Manager/Executive Producer Nikki Fitzgerald. Assistant Stage Managers Marion West/ Sophia Carlton.Lighting Designer Nathan Sciberras. Sound Designer Neville Pye. Composer Alexander Unikowski. Costume Designer Fiona Leach. Costume Realisation Tanya Taylor. Wig Stylist Shelby Holland. Puppet Designer Emma Rowland. Props Coordinator Brenton Warren. Marya Glyn-Daniel. Production Manager Alice Ferguson Promotional Photography Eva Schroeder. Production Photography Janelle McMenamin/Michael Moore. Marketing ACT HUB- Louiza Blomfield/Sebastian Winter Everyman Theatre. ACT HUB. March 22 – April 1 2023. Bookings: https://thelittleboxoffice.com/acthub/event/view/171229
Reviewed by Peter Wilkins
|Joel Horwood and Lewis Macdonald in Holding the Man|
The actors are warming up on stage as the audience enters the theatre at ACT HUB for Everyman Theatre’s production of Tommy Murphy’s play Holding the Man, adapted from the novel by Tim Conigrave. It is a reminder that what we are about to see is performed by actors. The characters, although based on real people, are not the real characters of Conigrave’s moving autobiographical account of the devastating impact of the AIDS crisis. The fact that the two hour’s traffic on the stage is played out by an outstanding ensemble of performers makes it no less visceral, no less powerful, no less moving and just as real as if we were watching a documentary film on the ravaging devastation of the Aids epidemic of the Eighties and Nineties.
|Joe Dinn and Joel Horwood in Holding the Man |
|Lewis Macdonld, Joel Horwood, Tracy Nobe, Amy Kowalczuk inHolsing the Man |
In the wake of the Covid 19 Pandemic and with the recent memory of the pain and the cruel prejudice of the AIDS epidemic, Murphy and West remind us of the vulnerability of the human condition and the enduring nature of love irrespective of gender or sexuality. It is the legacy of Conigrave’s autobiographical novel, resonating with empathy in Murphy’s adaptation and sensitively directed with flair and compassion by West. West has inspired a committed and talented cast to embrace Murphy’s writing and honour Conigrave’s love tragedy. Everyman Theatre’s production of Holding the Man is a gift to Canberra’s theatre-going community. Playwright, director, cast and creatives have collaborated in an inspiring theatrical tour de force that reminds us of the enduring nature of true love. Writer Tommy Murphy will be attending a Q and A after the final performance on April 1st. If you love the very best that theatre has to offer and embrace life with empathy, compassion and love then do not miss this outstanding production of Holding the Man.