Nothing strikes fear in the heart of drama lovers more than the words 'community theatre'. So I was more than just pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed the Nash Theatre production of Oscar Wilde's A Picture of Dorian Gray.
Nash Theatre has been supporting the arts in Brisbane since 1994. It has changed locations many times over the years but has continued staging quality performances. The scene of this particular production is the Merthyr Road Uniting Church in New Farm, an intimate venue that is licensed and has a lovely courtyard area for sipping your $3 (!!) glass of wine.
The play was simple in its props and setting but the acting and the story more than made up for its simplicity. I have never read the book (I know, I know), and I think in this instance it might have helped me as I really had no idea what to expect. I am also, therefore, not entirely sure how much was changed and adapted from the original, and so I don't know how much credit I should give to Nigel Munro-Wallis for this adaptation. But I do know that credit should be given to him for a play that held my interest from the very first line to the dramatic finale.
The ensemble cast were very good, particularly, I thought, the character of Lord Henry Wotton, whose accent and affectations were spot on.
Don't be frightened off by the idea of community theatre - A Picture of Dorian Gray was an engaging production, well worth seeing.