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Sweet Road by Javeenbah Theatre Theatre Review

Home > Brisbane > Community Theatre | Theatre | Theatre Reviews
by Jacqx Melilli (subscribe)
Jacq of all Trades, Master of Writing https://www.jacqx.com/
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Take a road trip on the Sweet Road called life
Sweet Road, Javeenbah Theatre, Debra Oswald, Gaye Gay, road trip, outback driving, journey, Australian play, Australian playwright


Sweet Road was written by award-winning Australian playwright, Debra Oswald, better known for her television series Offspring and The Secret Life of Us. Director, Gaye Gay did a wonderful job of staging multiple road trips, on a small stage, on a community theatre budget. Her choice of casting sealed the deal to make this a memorable production that will have you laughing, crying and wondering what's to become of the messy lives of these lovable characters.

Sweet Road, Javeenbah Theatre, Debra Oswald, Gaye Gay, road trip, outback driving, journey, Australian play, Australian playwright
Image courtesy of Ted Auguste


Jo, played by Kaela Gray laments the sacrifices she's made to accommodate her cheating husband's fifteen year life plan. Whilst sitting at traffic lights, Jo is devastated when she sees her husband kissing another woman. Her short drive turns into a road trip with no particular destination in mind. She picks up hitchhiker, Yasmin, who is high on love after meeting what she believes is the love of her life.

Sweet Road, Javeenbah Theatre, Debra Oswald, Gaye Gay, road trip, outback driving, journey, Australian play, Australian playwright
Image courtesy of Ted Auguste


Andy and Carla, with children and dog in tow are looking for greener pastures. Their attempt at escaping yet another disappointment, which seems to plague them wherever they go, thanks to Andy's hare brain ideas, ends as it usually does; with disastrous consequences.

Michael, who has suffered a devastating loss, hits the road to try to forget his painful memories. His role was played by Craig Smith who stole the show with his poignant performance. Equally impressive were Emily Scanlon, as Carla, who gave a brilliant performance, Kaela Gray as Jo and Dave Fraser as Andy. Frank, played by Colin Turner, a widower retiree chooses to live life on the edge rather than face a life of loneliness in a caravan park. Each performance was a credit to a beautifully written play that touched on human emotional fragility.

Sweet Road, Javeenbah Theatre, Debra Oswald, Gaye Gay, road trip, outback driving, journey, Australian play, Australian playwright
Image courtesy of Ted Auguste


Staging a play based on multiple road trips requires the audience to use their imagination. There are no cars and Andy and Carla's children and dog are invisible. Props are minimal and the set has been cleverly designed to reflect the stages of each character's journey. Credit to Colin Crow for his masterful use of lighting and sound which enhanced the ambience of the play without being obtrusive.

Sweet Road will take you on a journey that intertwines the lives of these characters in unexpected ways. It's a beautiful story, worthy of your time.

Sweet Road, Javeenbah Theatre, Debra Oswald, Gaye Gay, road trip, outback driving, journey, Australian play, Australian playwright
Image courtesy of Ted Auguste


Community theatre is intimate and special in its own way. I certainly appreciate the hard work and dedication that goes into every production. Treat yourself to a night out at the theatre. It's cheaper than dining out and will enrich your mind with a new experience.

Javeenbah Theatre is a small intimate, air-conditioned theatre located in Nerang. It is beautifully set up with tables and chairs al fresco where you can meet friends prior to the show and enjoy drinks and nibbles at the fully licensed bar. There is also comfortable seating indoors. Opening night tickets include a light supper after the show giving you an opportunity to socialise and meet the cast and crew. Javeenbah is an Aboriginal word meaning 'The Meeting Place'.

I recommend you book in as early as possible, especially if you are planning to go as a group, as Javeenbah is a small theatre with limited seating.

Sweet Road was performed at Javeenbah Theatre, Nerang, QLD

Directed by: Gaye Gay
Assistant Director: Grant Gay
Stage Manager: Kate Armon
Sound & Lighting: Colin Crow
Set Design: Grant Gay, Abbey Moore, Gillian Crow, Kaela Gray, Virginia Leaver, Helen Maden, Craig Smith

Cast
Jo played by Kaela Gray
Andy played by Dave Fraser
Carla played by Emily Scanlon
Michael played by Craig Smith
Yasmin played by Frankie Spear
Frank played by Colin Turner
Curtis played by Dominic Bradley
Policewoman played by Gillian Crow
Mechanic played by Grant Gay
Motel Receptionist played by Kate Armon

Reviewed on 25 March 2017 by Jacquelin Melilli

Sweet Road, Javeenbah Theatre, Debra Oswald, Gaye Gay, road trip, outback driving, journey, Australian play, Australian playwright
Image courtesy of Ted Auguste
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Why? Take a road trip on the Sweet Road called life.
When: Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays 24th March to 8th of April 2017 at 8pm. Sunday matinee at 2pm, 26th March & 2nd April 2017.
Phone: 07 5596 0300
Where: Javeenbah Theatre corner of Ferry and Stevens streets, Nerang.
Cost: $20 to $25
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