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Venus in Fur - Lightning Jar Theatre

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by Mistress of Culture Vultures (subscribe)
I am a writer living in Melbourne who loves to devour culture and the arts. Visit me at www.pumptheatre.com.au
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Aphrodite whips male power and control into submission
David Ives, Venus in Fur, Darcy Kent, Kirsten von Bibra, 45 Downstairs Flinders Lane Melbourne, Theatre, Psychology, sadomasochism, Lightning Jar Theatre, Tilly Legge
Venus in Fur by Lightning Jar Theatre


Check out Lightning Jar Theatre's production of David Ives' play Venus in Fur, now playing at 45 Downstairs, Flinders Lane, Melbourne, until 24 March 2018. Book your tickets here.

David Ives, Venus in Fur, Darcy Kent, Kirsten von Bibra, 45 Downstairs Flinders Lane Melbourne, Theatre, Psychology, sadomasochism, Lightning Jar Theatre, Tilly Legge
Tilly Legge plays 'Vanda' - photo by Sarah Walker


On a dark and stormy evening in New York, an actress 'Wanda Jordan' (Tilly Legge) forces her way into Thomas' (Darcy Kent) theatre space, hours late for her audition, unprepared, wearing a bondage collar and fetish costume. She feigns naivety and manipulates Thomas to read his play 'Venus in Fur' with her. As the 'all night long' audition ensues, Thomas is seduced by the 'Vanda', and cannot separate the character from the actress.

David Ives, Venus in Fur, Darcy Kent, Kirsten von Bibra, 45 Downstairs Flinders Lane Melbourne, Theatre, Psychology, sadomasochism, Lightning Jar Theatre, Tilly Legge, Hannah Greenwood
Darcy Kent as 'Thomas' and Tilly Legge as 'Vanda' - photo by Sarah Walker


Both Vanda and Thomas slip in and out of the roleplay, but it is unclear if they know each other, are strangers, are lovers, or just a director and vying actress. The status and power of the characters flip and turn between dominant and submissive until Vanda confronts Thomas about his ingrained misogyny and disregard for his fiancée.

David Ives, Venus in Fur, Darcy Kent, Kirsten von Bibra, 45 Downstairs Flinders Lane Melbourne, Theatre, Psychology, sadomasochism, Lightning Jar Theatre, Tilly Legge
'Venus in Fur' - photo by Sarah Walker


This performance is an intense 95 minutes but stick with it, as this is a clever piece adapted by David Ives, from 'Venus in Furs' by Leopold von Sacher-Masoch. The audience is kept guessing as Legge and Kent power through an aerobic display of highly charged interactions, building suspense and erupting in a volcanic climax.

David Ives, Venus in Fur, Darcy Kent, Kirsten von Bibra, 45 Downstairs Flinders Lane Melbourne, Theatre, Psychology, sadomasochism, Lightning Jar Theatre, Tilly Legge
'Venus in Fur' - photo by Sarah Walker


There are divided opinions about this play; some think David Ives is making a statement about misogyny and the treatment of women in the theatre industry. Others think it is a contemporary interpretation of Sacher-Masoch' story of his life and marriage.

David Ives, Venus in Fur, Darcy Kent, Kirsten von Bibra, 45 Downstairs Flinders Lane Melbourne, Theatre, Psychology, sadomasochism, Lightning Jar Theatre, Tilly Legge
'Venus in Fur' - photo by Sarah Walker


Whatever the case, this is a great production by Lightning Jar Theatre, directed by Kirsten Von Bibra, and if you can sit through a movie, then get along and see Venus in Fur at 45 Downstairs this week.

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*Mistress of Culture Vultures was invited as a guest
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Why? Turning misogyny on its head
When: Tues-Sat 7.30 pm, Sundays 6.00 pm, Matinee 18 March 2.00 pm
Phone: 03 9662 9966
Where: 45 Downstairs, 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne, Vic, 3000
Cost: $30.00 - $40.00
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