Holden Street Theatres
Until 18 Apr 2021

Review by Helen Karakulak

Wings2fly’s performances of “The Day the Internet Died” and “How to Survive Being in a Shakespeare Play” were engaging and enthusiastic, showcasing the future of Adelaide’s theatre scene as bright and bubbly.

Directed by Michelle Nightingale, “The Day the Internet Died” is a well-paced exploration of how reliant society has become on the internet, and how inept we are at basic human interaction without our digital crutches.

Having the young ensemble play characters of various ages, such as businesspeople, mayors, older relatives alongside younger Instagram dating app crazed youth, was an effective nod to the fact that internet reliance has afflicted us all, and is not limited to younger generations.

With an amusing script and effective blocking, all of the cast (Charlie Zorkovic, Georgia Whalan, Gracie Manifold, Jasmyn Setchell, Jasper Darwent, Josh Elford, Katelyn Monaghan, Mahie Poonia, Nicolas Bedford, Olivia Whitbread, Peta Downes, Savannah Guthrie, Sophie March and Tim Whalan) flex their comedic muscles, ensuring laughs.

While all cast members do well to project their voices and strut in character, highlights include Jasmyn Setchell’s performance of the poised librarian, Harriet and her frustration at those that mistake her with Siri. Sophie March’s characterisation as the Mayor attempting to be authoritative is captivating.

Directed by Alicia Zorkovic, “How to Survive Being in a Shakespeare Play” was an engaging and humorous way of understanding Shakespeare’s tragedies and those that have the fortune (or misfortune) to perform them.

Written by Don Zolidis, it seems a challenging script for a young cast as snippets of monologues rely on an understanding of Shakespeare’s work. However, all performers (Ashlee Rawson, Audrey Murphy-Young, Ava Malavazos, Billy Rowan, Byron Jeffery, Callum Logan, Florence Du, Flynn Doyle, Lauren Davidson, Lily Williams, Marcus Murdoch, Marsha Zabanias, Milly Willcox, Sedrah Isa, and Holly Smith-Combe) brought an abundance of effort and intensity to their roles.

If you’ve studied Shakespeare, are an avid theatregoer or a fan of his tragedies, the more niche little nods to particular plays land well. Regardless, the play is enjoyable even if you miss a reference or two. While the performers articulation could have improved in places where Shakespeare’s tongue-twisting quotes got lost, the Bard’s dialogue can stump the most seasoned actors at times.

Deserving of a special mention include the raspy voices of the witches of Macbeth, played by Florence Du, Ava Malavazos, and Sedrah Isa. Callum Logan is a humorous Tybalt with modern flair. Byron Jeffery brings wonderful expression to the stage in his many roles, but especially as Hamlet. Breaking up scenes, Narrators Ashlee Rawson and Milly Wilcox project well, accompanied by their announcers, including a thrilling trumpet was a great touch.

Wings2fly’s cheerful double bill production and undoubtedly enthusiastic cast certainly perked up my Saturday afternoon.