Wednesday, October 26, 2011

La Boite's 2012 Season Launch

La Boite's 2012 Season Launch was amazing fun, and I am ecstatic about next year's line up. I think I got an offer to attend because of the ambassador campaign back in May when me, Jordan, and a couple of other people were put in some brochures to raise some money for La Boite's ambassador program. Let's just get the negativity out of the way: I'm not keen on any of the fonts being used for the show titles, but hopefully at this point they're just placeholders until artwork/design is finalised

The night started off with a video that attacks your senses making references to the season before a frenzied Helen Howard talking about all the opportunities in life that have passed her by concluding with an introduction to the first mainstage show, As You Like It. It will be directed by David Berthold (so expect some shirtless people) and opens in February. I can't wait for this show - the cast has 10 primary actors playing the major roles and an additional chorus of actors in training from QUT and... the other place. I think I heard the total number being something like 18, which I am really excited for since La Boite's biggest cast this year was 7. Glad to see that Thomas Larkin, Kathryn Marquet and Hayden Spencer are also returning to the box. I hope there are some trees or foliage in this show.

The next show that will be a mainstage is Midsummer, a loose adaptation on A Midsummer Night's Dream with songs (which was my original pick for David to direct). Looks like La Boite picked up that Brisbane audiences are lapping up musical material, because this has sold out theatres in the UK and the US - we're even being treated to the original duo cast. Cora Bissett and Matthew Pigeon, who are the mains, popped up on video and said how delighted they were to be coming to Brisbane. Providing that the music is good, I am too.

In May we'll be experiencing A Hoax which is the play I'm least looking forward to. It apparently revolves around an Indigenous woman who allegedly wrote a best-seller memoir, and has been offered to write a sequel - however, it turns out the original was written by a white social worker on her behalf. Panic ensures. The world turns upside down, panic ensures, babies eat dingos, etc. La Boite bills it as a "vicious satire on the politics of identity, modern celebrity and the peddling of abuse culture". Sounds heavy, but I guess we had to have one of them.

I lost my shit when it was announced that The Harbinger was making a return, but as a mainstage, in August. I remembered when David gingerly told us that they were re-working the whole thing, and it makes total sense since the season was a total sell out. I think this could potentially be the show where I leave La Boite loving everything, providing it has better music and less pirates. Dead Puppet Society absolutely deserve all the attention they're getting and I really hope I'm mesmerised by it this time.

The last mainstage show which plays in September til October is Tender Napalm which will also be directed by David Berthold. It's billed as just another love story which evolves into a fantasy of 'tales of golden shores, snakes, serpents, kings, queens and blood'. I just can't really comprehend the description at all, it's that bizarre. It will probably have shirtless people, but judging by the artwork I guess it'll be visually stunning (I hope).

There are 5 Indie shows this year. The Danger Ensemble are returning with Children of War directed by Stephen Mitchell Wright, which will undoubtedly be a winning combination. I'm thrilled that Benjamin Schostakowski's ensemble Monsters Appear will be playing A Tribute of Sorts, which is a piece inspired by Edward Gorey's delicious macabre work. The others I don't really have any opinions on because I was too happy for everyone else. Looking forward to them though.

After that we partied til the cows went home and then went home with the cows and partied some more. I walked around hugging and kissing everyone who was badass, thanked a number of people, continually shouted at David Morton, and sang many obnoxious Sondheim lyrics at various people.

It was an incredible night and all I can say is that I would rather be an ambassador for La Boite next year because I can't wait. In fact, I can't believe it was just yesterday - it feels like years ago already. The 2012 line-up looks explosive, vibrant and unbelievably exciting. Mixing the contemporary with the traditional, as always David Berthold's choice of theatre has totally repositioned La Boite as Brisbane's most compelling theatre venue - there's so much new, exciting talent and originality coming from these shows. I just can't wait. Not sure how I'll sneak into the launch next year, but I sure hope it'll happen.

I never want to wash this off... wish it was Season Launch every night!

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