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Ballarat National Theatre

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PERFORMANCE DATES

December 1, 5, 6, 7, 8 at 8.00 pm
Matinee –Sunday 2nd December at 2.00 pm

Directed and Designed by Julian Oldfield

 

CAST

Colonel Forbes - HAYDN VINCENT
Stella - PEPPA SINDAR
Janet - MARY- ROSE McLAREN
Brenda - LORYL OGLETHORPE
Maurice - PAUL ROSE
Colin - JOHN DAYKIN
Iris - LINDA OGIER
Mr. Howard - ED DALY
Nurse Thomson - SALLY READ

CREW

Stage Manager - Sally Read
Deputy - Katrina Hill
Crew - Kate Peachey & Matt Kast,
Lighting Design - Liam Mudge
ably assisted by Jacinta Eltze, Ash Grist & Tegan Allen
Costuming - Lynn Muller & Gwen Quick
Sound - Michael Zala

Graphic Design - Peter Freund
Photography - Gary Hunt

REVIEW

REVIEWER - GAIL SJOGREN

The House by the Lake is worth a visit.

Most of us enjoy a good murder mystery, and that is just what The House by the Lake delivers in the Ballarat National Theatre’s Christmas production which has been described as a “Christie-ish crime comedy”.

The audience knows full well who has done the deed, and at first sympathises with the motive if not the action. But there are many twists to be unravelled in this well-crafted plot before the whole truth is laid bare.

The time is the late 1940’s as excellent costuming suggests. The set takes us into the living room of the house by the lake, with clever lighting effects providing a flickering wood fire inside and the winter sun reflecting on the icy lake beyond the window. It is in the lake that the body is found and ….but no more of the story for fear of giving too much away!

Appropriately moody music heightens the tension as this is as much a psychological study as anything else. The acting is consistent and strong with a particularly stand-out performance from Mary-Rose McLaren as the vulnerable wife of a deregistered psychiatrist. She is ably supported by Paul Rose as her husband, Peppa Sindar as his sister and co-conspirator, John Daykin as their singularly unlikeable step-brother and Linda Ogier as his long-suffering and abused wife. Haydn Vincent and Ed Daly provide the forces of law and order while Loryl Oglethorpe and Sally Read provide household help and nursing skill.

Though the action starts slowly, the emotional tension increases until the unexpected but very satisfying ending. All in all an enjoyable night out before the holiday season reaches fever pitch!