I am a writer living in Melbourne who loves to devour culture and the arts. Visit me at www.pumptheatre.com.au
Can dinner save this family from themselves?
Family dynamics are never straightforward and biological ties can be weapons of mass destruction as evident in Blood is Thicker Than Hummus presented by Little Dirt Path. This intimate and interactive show is on now until 23 September in the Melbourne Fringe Festival at Siteworks in Brunswick. Book your tickets here.
Meet the Parker Family in 'Blood is Thicker than Hummus'
Set in an old terraced convent, guests are welcomed into the Parker family home by matriarch Pamela Parker (Melina Wylie) sporting nylon curlers, who takes you into the kitchen for gossip and intrigue. Meanwhile, Penelope Parker (Catherine Holder) frolics with the other guests and tries to contact her brother. Patrick Parker (Pearce Hessling) arrives 'late-as-usual' and hummus is served with some inedible snacks, with a teapot of a dead Aunts' ashes on the family dinner table.
Meet Pamela Parker (Melina Wylie) / Image by Sarah Steiner
There are political fights across the table between the 'terrible twins' about their experimental sex lives, veganism, fish, plastics, Tinder, and pegging. Fake compliments are exchanged in a lame effort to satisfy Mum, in the hope that dinner will be served. However, our plates are left hungry as this family drama escalates.
Meet Patrick Parker (Pearce Hessling) and family / Image by Sarah Steiner
There's unearthed dirt in the closest and unaired laundry, but accolades for the best zucchinis in Shepparton will not save the day. Mum's grief and her unacknowledged alcoholism add fuel to the fire, and in a desperate attempt to save the sacrament of family dinner, the twins cower to Mum's demands to sing the 'I'm sorry song' with sock puppets to restore peace temporarily. Dessert is a served in the form of a ritual family dance in tribute to growing up in the 1980's.
Meet Penelope Parker (Catherine Holder) / Image by Sarah Steiner
Pink placemats aside, this is a fun interactive fringe show which will remind you why you avoid visiting family at Christmas and other stressful times of the year. The only thing missing from this 80's family dinner table is a pavlova or a sponge cake with passionfruit icing and some leg warmers – but we'll forgive Mum, poor pet, as she hasn't had a holiday in 16 years.
'Blood is Thicker Than Hummus' - photo by Ina Parr
See Blood is Thicker Than Hummus, created by Catherine Holder and Pearce Hessling of Little Dirt Path, is on now at Siteworks in the Melbourne Fringe Festival before Mum's cask wine bladder runs dry.
Siteworks is located at 33 Saxon Street just before the Brunswick Baths, behind St Ambrose Church on Sydney Road and across from the Brunswick Mechanics Institute. This is a 'family dinner show' so there are only 10 tickets per sitting, so you better be quick to get your fill of Pam's hummus.