Confident, explicit and not without its share of laughs, The Ultimate Lesbian Double Feature is a short play, split into two parts, staged as part of the 2016 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras programme.
The first section showcases a series of famous lesbians throughout history sexting, sharing stories, recounting romances and sexual encounters. The first and last of these sketches, featuring an ancient Greek poet and a prominent modern talk show host respectively, were the stand-outs from the first half and laugh-out-loud funny. The comic foil in the very first sketch, an actress underutilized throughout the rest of the production, kept the punch-lines coming, while the final sketch’s use of physical comedy was superbly executed.
The remaining sketches, featuring Virginia Woolf among others, followed a repetitive and clearly fixed formula, neither clear in their setting and context nor revelling in the type of sustained humour which made the first and last entries so entertaining.
The latter half depicted the preparation and execution of a dinner party with a fairy godmother figure front and centre, directing the action and delivering most of the comedy. Many of the performers, left to wander and feign mock chatter during this sequence while other characters held the limelight, appeared somewhat dis-coordinated in their staging and often rendered themselves more distracting than not. Enjoyable regardless, a few of the best one-liners were delivered in the second half which also allowed the opportunity for the very diverse cast to play to their strengths.
Fun and without a doubt an interesting and thought-provoking concept, the show unfortunately lagged due to its reliance on the oft-repeated sketch formula. Nevertheless this formula did succeed in producing numerous uproarious moments.
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
Old Fitz Theatre
Dates 23rd February-5th March
10.15pm Tuesday-Saturday, 7.45pm Sunday
Glen Falkenstein on ArtsHub