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  • Writer's pictureJordan Anderson

Flight Path Theatre and Frantic Muse Productions: Cate Fucking Blanchett - Review by Jordan Anderson


The best kind of theatre is the theatre that keeps you guessing, keeps you wondering to the very last second what plot twist will unveil itself, what hidden meaning will unexpectedly make itself clear and suffice it to say ‘Cate Fucking Blanchett’ fucking delivers. I had no notion of what to expect when stepping in to Flight Path Theatre and now nearly 24 hours on, I’m still not sure what I experienced, only that I liked it, I liked it a lot.

Unknown Playwright/Director Karolina Ristevski has masterfully curated a meta-World so vast and so immersive that I didn’t even trust it was over when I was leaving the theatre. I’m not convinced that me typing this review is my own choice and not just a part of her expertly crafted web. I strongly believe that I will look up to see my own sister walking down the hallway towards me wearing a blonde wig.


In all seriousness though, I loved this script and I loved this production in all its weird, goofy gloriousness. The interplay of different narrative storytelling devices from an unreliable narrator to a literal voice of God, the self-referential humour of the theatre and the complete twisting of common theatre tropes such as hyper reality, turned this from just a play into a true immersive theatrical experience. And despite it twisting and turning and throwing itself into the fire, the script somehow never loses sight of its original story about 3 sisters, their pain, and their struggles in understanding themselves and where they sit in this World.

As wonderfully great as this script and the direction is, it would be nothing without our actresses, and Cate Blanchett is just as amazing as you would expect in a show written specifically for her, so poised, so proper, so engaged. However, I want to talk about the 3 actresses that also shared her stage and characters. Angela Johnston as Nina, Lana Morgan as Grace and Melissa Jones as Margo/t (Maggot) were simply put a triumph. All 3 of these incredible actresses had an extremely daunting job ahead of them to make a script, that shouldn’t make sense, make sense and to make sure the audience was not only following along but living it. Nina and Grace bickering in the first Act, felt like home. It was the exact relationship I remember living with my older siblings, a mix of deep disdain and but deeper care. It felt quintessentially Australian, but like it was made for a British audience. The shifting power dynamic between the 3 of them was naturally believable and showed the deep resentment but love they had. Families are complicated but these 3 pulled it off.


I do want to give a shout out to Kate Bookallil as The Writer. As creatives it can be hard to separate ourselves and our personal wants from a work and she portrayed this beautifully, seamlessly becoming part of the story in a way that felt organic and a beautiful homage to the creative process. John Michael Narres in a hilarious bit part as Dr Wilcox was also a real highlight of an already incredible cast. His fast-paced energy and frantic charm was the perfect contrast to Nina’s trepidation at the IVF clinic, and the following scene with Nurse Not Now had the entire audience in stitches.

There are so many things that I can talk about in regard to this show and how brilliantly clever I believe it is, but I don’t want to spoil it for you. There’s only a very small chance to see this show in the Sydney Fringe but if it comes around again, do not miss your chance! Before signing off though, I would like to also mention David Molloy’s Projections. In a small venue like the Flight Path Theatre, they really helped sell the story and create the World of the show. Also having a plane landing in one of the slides was one of those brilliant touches to help bring us back to the Flight Path Theatre. And the general staging and blocking of scenes was fantastic, I don’t want to say to much, but I loved the big Climax in Act 2, it was so understatedly brilliant! Melissa Jones was a particular powerhouse in this scene and I live for it.


So finally, go see ‘Cate Fucking Blanchett’ at the Flight Path Theatre. She’s great! The script is great! The production itself is great. Is Cate Blanchett actually in it? Well her names in the title so you would assume she is, but only one way to find out. I give this show a thoroughly well-deserved 5 synthetic blond wigs and a half-eaten sandwich.

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