by Desirée Gezentsvey
directed by James Hadley
at Q Theatre Loft, 305 Queen St, Auckland
From 6 Nov 2012 to 10 Nov 2012
Reviewed by Matt Baker, 8 Nov 2012
originally published in Theatre Scenes - Auckland Theatre Blog
Young writers are frequently reminded to write what they know, and Nuclear Family is a great example of why that is. There is no indication as to which degree this show, written by Venezuelan born veteran writer Desiree Gezentsvey, is autobiographical, which in turn raises the question of how much art should imitate life and where artistic license should be permitted to incorporate theatrical falsehoods to illustrate truths, but there is nonetheless a kernel of truth that resonates throughout the piece.
Performed by Gezentsvey's daughter Yael, this resonance is compounded when one recognises that there is a generational passing on of story occurring. Aptly presented as a one-woman show, Yael finds a distinct variety of vocal patterning (accents are absolutely spot on) and physicality in each of her 11 (if I counted correctly) characters. Those that are closer to her age are clearly easier for her to morph into, and there is some slight shtick required for the others, but this is forgivable as the humour of these characters acts to drive certain scenes. [More]
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Ewen Coleman [Reproduced with permission of Fairfax Med (The Dominion Post);