It’s 2018; the idea of reconciliation has crawled its way into the veins of our national sport and is infecting the very heartbeat of what makes Australia great.
In this Blue Room Theatre production, two mothers fight for what they believe is right, influenced by their own theories rather than what is true. As evolved humans they learn to place themselves in the shoes of another with the assistance of a meddling Scottish mediator.
The dialogue is strong, each line undercutting prejudicial thoughts and perceptions about other characters (and other races) in this live action role-play argument.
We are the audience to a debate regarding what classifies assault and what’s best for our kin.
Emerging playwright Barbara Hostalek has a knack for clever lines, infused with their own cultural twist as she incorporates the Aboriginal dialect into her script.
She has developed a production that explores a number of themes as they pertain to one particular aspect of Australian culture – Aussie Rules. Even the foreigner is able to connect in his way, and with his own version of ‘football’.
As they present their opinions of the incident they realise their own shortcomings and what they share as individuals in modern Australia.
This play is deep and fast paced; it challenges today’s views and tackles issues reminiscent of the Adam Goodes’ incident 5 years ago.
Hellie Turner’s direction is masterful, rousing an adrenaline spike in expectation as the characters fought with their body language and combative dialogue.
There were a few clumsy moments where words weren’t delivered with the potential intensity or the actor’s nerves were visible.
This, however, didn’t affect the audience’s reaction at all, with many having to wipe quickly away at falling tears before launching into demonstrative applause when the lights blacked out.
If you appreciate good humour, antagonistic characters and sincere acting, Banned is perfect for you.
We were promised a night that ended in mutual justice and that is exactly what we got – the fact that it wasn’t what we anticipated is irrelevant and, if anything, a blessing.