Sunday, 27 October 2013

The Peach Season at The Pavilion Theatre

Amy Crilley as Sheena, Julian Floriano as Kieran and Hannah Montgomery as Zoe in The Peach Season. Courtesy of The Pavilion Theatre.

The Peach Season
Cast: Anna Kourouvale, Jan Mahoney, Hannah Montgomery, Brendan Iddles, Amy Crilley and Julian Floriano
Director: Bernard Oswald
The Pavilion Theatre: September 27 - October 19, 2013

Is there any bond stronger than that between a mother and child? Is there any love more intoxicating than that of first love? The Peach Season, Directed by Debra Oswald and performed at the Pavilion Theatre, explores both these aspects through the turbulent tale of Zoe (Hannah Montgomery) and her mother Celia (Anna Kourouvale). Living on a peach plantation in rural NSW, mother an daughter exist in harmony with their delightfully meddling neighbour Dorothy (Jan Mahoney) and her son Joe (Brendan Iddles), the solicitor caught in a dysfunctional marriage. When Sheena (Amy Crilley) and her half brother Kieran (Julian Floriano) arrive looking for some work to help pay off their broken down car it starts a chain reaction of events that will test all their limitations and previously held ideals.

We see a daughter struggle with her desire to be independent and her need to be loved, a mother desperate to protect those she loves even while she is pushing them away and two siblings whose chaotic relationship is steeped in genuine affection even as they fight like cat and dog. 

In her first performance with the Pavilion Theatre, Amy Crilley steals the show as Sheena. Her take on an adolescent with a dysfunctional past who shows little trust in anyone and even less affection is played to perfection. Even more believable is her relationship with her half brother Kieran, played by Julian Floriano, another Pavilion first timer. Their banter is hilarious and brilliantly timed, with the audience entirely convinced of their bond.

Another stand-out performance is Jan Mahoney who plays Dorothy, the meddling older woman who lives on the property and helps with the peach harvest. Adopting the role of narrator, Dorothy keeps the story moving and fills in the gaps between scenes. She also provides some much needed comic relief from the heavy and at times intense plot.

A play that centres on relationships, The Peach Season is a moving and potent tale of the bonds that connect us and also the ones that drive us apart.          

Jan Mahoney as Dorothy and Anna Kouravale as Celia in The Peach Season. Courtesy of The Pavilion Theatre.

Check out other reviews of Pavilion Theatre productions.

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