Won't Pay!, Nobel Prize, Shane Morgan, Mike Piccerilli, Gabriella Maselli, Heidi Gledhill, Mark Duffy , Damien Pleming, Cat & Fiddle Hotel">
Dario Fo comes to Balmain
SYDNEY The contemporary Australian adaptation of Italian playwright Dario Fo's 1974 political farce, Can't Pay! Won't Pay! is set 29 years later in inner-western Sydney.
The play still explodes and inspires. Nobel Prize winner and comic extraordinaire Fo unites us once again through laughter. The daily grind, the stress of having no money on relationships, the notion of leadership and the exhilaration of taking a stand are all played out in this classic comedy. Can't Pay! Won't Pay!'s energy and madness is all engrossing.
This play is thoroughly entertaining while maintaining its political significance. It is at times tragic, because we feel the characters' struggles, and absurd because it is self-conscious and playful.
Director Shane Morgan uses his innate sense of comedy and passion for Fo in interpreting this madcap comedy. Actors Mike Piccerilli, Gabriella Maselli, Heidi Gledhill, Mark Duffy and Damien Pleming create an awesome ensemble and move through the domestic and political dramas with hilarious speed.
They play second generation Italian Australians attempting to grapple with their oppressive economic and work conditions. The characters are Italians, but they could well be Lebanese, Vietnamese or Iranian immigrants. Can't Pay, Won't Pay! comments on migrant sacrifice and community strength using side-splitting farce that only Fo can conjure.
Can't Pay! Won't Pay! is being performed at the Cat & Fiddle Hotel, 456 Darling St, Balmain, until February 22. Wednesday Saturday, 8pm; Sundays, 5pm. Tickets: $22, $17 concession.
From Green Left Weekly, February 12, 2003.
Visit the Green Left Weekly home page.