Travels With JB

Travels With JB

Travel news and reviews

A family reunion can often be stressful but in Anthropocene Play Company’s newest production, 7 Captiva Road, the experience is catastrophic.

Mikhaela Ebony (Francine) and Sebastian Gunner (Enzo) star in 7 Captiva Road playing at Chapel off Chapel.*

First developed at Labyrinth Theatre Company New York under Artistic Director the late Philip Seymour Hoffman and written by Andrea Ciannavei, the play’s world premiere is on at Melbourne’s Chapel off Chapel.

Set in New England in 2004, 7 Captiva Road tells the story of an Italian-American family who are gathering at the family home to say their farewells to their dying Grandmum (Lyndal Charteris).

Sebastian Gunner( Enzo) and Helen Doig (Olivia).*

Olivia (Helen Doig) still lives in the house with her husband Enzo (Sebastian Gunner). Her daughter Francine (Mikhaela Ebony) has been helping look after her grandmother who is in at-home palliative care after traumatic chemotherapy treatment.

The arrival of Olivia’s son Christopher (Max Garcia-Underwood) provides the first indications that there are unresolved issues within the family. The tension between Olivia and her sister Gabrielle (Bronwen Coleman), who has been visiting her mother, also becomes clear. The appearance of Olivia’s other sister Barbara (Clare Larman) and her daughter Joanne (Pia Omeadhra) results in even more conflict.

Pia Omeadhra (Joanne) and Lyndal Charteris (Grandmum)*

Gradually the reasons for the toxic relationships between family members are revealed and it’s fair to say they are pretty horrific.

While the themes explored in 7 Captiva Road are generally dark, involving generational violence and abuse, there are also a few light-hearted moments and a couple of clever and humorous lines.

The hard-working cast, which also includes Tim Clarke as Gabrielle’s husband Bob and Ani Priyo as the family’s next door neighbour Maureen, all do a good job in bringing their characters to life. Doig, Coleman and Ebony excel in roles which emotionally must be particularly demanding.

Bronwen Coleman (Gabrielle).*

Given the Anthropocene Play Company is committed to making incisive, relevant theatre that provokes action and conversation around the significant issues of our time, its decision to stage 7 Captiva Road is no surprise.

7 Captiva Road is playing at Chapel Off Chapel until March 3. For more information and tickets visit the Chapel Off Chapel website.

*Photo credit: Parenthesy – Cameron Grant.

Jenny Burns attended the opening of 7 Captiva Road as a guest of the production company.

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