Scrumptious, rambunctious - Regional News | Connecting Wellington
 Issue 223

Photo by Roc Torio

Scrumptious, rambunctious by Alessia Belsito-Riera

Settle in for a story of sisterhood, suitors, and surprises at Sense and Sensibility. This larger-than-life production based on the novel Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen suffuses Circa Theatre with charm and cheek from the 6th of July to the 3rd of August.

In a time of housing insecurity, wage gaps, and respiratory illnesses, 2024 is starting to look a lot like 1811. Sense and Sensibility is a colourful romp through Regency-era Britain that rings with contemporary relevance. Left destitute upon their father’s death, sensible Elinor (Adriana Calabrese) and madly passionate Marianne (Lily Moore) are seeking true love and happiness – but just what secrets are their gentlemen suitors hiding behind their flannel waistcoats?

The talented cast packs a punch with Calabrese (Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812) and Moore (Mamma Mia!) as the daring Dashwood sisters. They’re joined by Heather O’Carroll (Things I Know to be True), Amy Tarleton, Bronwyn Turei (The Valentina), and Aimée Sullivan (Kinky Boots) performing a rolodex of roles by portraying no less than five characters each.

Responsible for this rambunctious rewrite is award-winning writer and performer Penny Ashton, who is known the world over for her boisterous and bold takes on literary classics. Her work celebrates the silly while reapplying the timeless truths in classic tales to our modern-day world, woes, and ways. Bringing her high-energy comedy solo shows to international stages, Ashton has worn many bonnets over her 21 years in the industry. With Sense and Sensibility, she makes her directorial debut in collaboration with composer Gareth Farr ONZM on music and designer Ian Harman on costumes and set.

Fizzing with energy, flirtation and frivolity, vivid theatricality, and delightful humour, Sense and Sensibility is a surefire way to bring warmth into the Wellington winter.

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« Issue 223, July 2, 2024