Saturday, January 26, 2019

Love and Anger

Photo by Suzanne Phoenix

The Griffin Theatre present LOVE AND ANGER, devised by Betty Grumble at the SBW Stables, Darlinghurst. 21st - 26th January.

LOVE AND ANGER, is back after a one night stint in the Griffin Bach Festival last April. Betty Grumble, a subversive burlesque artist from the fringe of Sydney theatre activism is, spectacularly, back.

With the 1967 text, THE SCUM MANIFESTO, by Valerie Solanas - a radical feminist work - in her hands and quoted from, serving as a reference to give this work, well spine, Betty uses her body in a ' in-yer-face' reveal to parody, satirise, mens' historic objectification of women and to re-claim the sexual normality of the female.

She is fearless (courageous) in the method of her activism and it is startling, provoking, funny, and an hour in the theatre that you will not easily forget. It is rare to have this kind of show on the stage of a mainstream space and here it is: again.

Amongst much, there is a parody of a stripper's 'bump and grind', with that music that we can all quote, blended with the routine of her own mother's Body Building performance in a pink bikini, that is elegant and powerful in its physical beauty and control, hilariously executed, dripping with the intensity of the political irony that Betty Grumble gives this sequence, that was escalated, for me, by the personal remembrance of the actual location of the Griffin Theatre which is only a short distance from the notorious Strip Club enclave of Darlinghurst Rd (now in decline but still there) where men and women boggled with taunt the female form and sexuality. Ms Grumble's performance is delicious.

There is definite Method in Ms Grumble's Madness and there is, for me, no gratuitousness in the show. It expresses the ANGER of a woman at the world that is, but, also, is balanced by the LOVE she has for all of the human species - even - especially, the men.

It is a wild and daring ride - I thoroughly recommend it. See my past blog for more information.

Do go for the loving provocation.

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