Strangers in Between
by Tommy Murphy
director Adam Spreadbury-Maher
with Alex Ansdell, Matthew Mitcham, Stephen Connery-Brown
design David Shields
music Aaron Climgham
lighting Richard Lambert
Golden Goose Theatre, Camberwell • 19.Sep-7.Oct.23 ★★★★
It's set in Sydney's once-rough Kings Cross suburb, as runaway teen Shane (Ansdell) finds a job in a bottle shop and begins to learn about life in the city and also explore the world as a young gay man. He flirts awkwardly with customer Will (Mitcham), beginning a tentative relationship. And older customer Peter (Connery-Brown) befriends Shane as well, showing him the ropes. As the months pass, Shane begins to confront his past, most notably his sometimes violent relationship with his brother Ben (also Mitcham), and he also begins to plot a way forward with the help of his new friends.
Ansdell is excellent in a demanding role as a lost boy trying to find his footing in a place that scares him. Even in some shocking mood swings, his open-handed performance is hugely sympathetic, offering beautiful connections with the other actors. Connery-Brown brings just the right balance of pathos and sassiness to Peter, a middle-aged man who is world-weary but still kicking. And Mitcham has a terrific matter-of-fact physicality as the muscly Will, a young guy who is confident in who he is, but perhaps sees something worth pursuing in Shane.
GOLDEN GOOSE THEATRE >
photos by Peter Davies • 30.Sep.23