RRAMP- the Collector, the Archivist & the Electrocrat opened Wednesday night at The Powerhouse in Brisbane’s New Farm. This eclectic and interesting performance by long time collaborators Christine Johnston, Lisa O’Neill and Peter Nelson was moving, passionate and slap your thigh hilarious.
The performance was a truly crazy and entertaining story about a woman’s desire to collect things and make a band. A tender song towards the end, however, revealed a deeper meaning to the show to do with a past heartache and how it may have driven the main character to live a life of strict obedience and obsessively collecting ‘things’; things to look at.
The band RRAMP played an electro/pop/metal fusion of sound, which integrated into a wildly quirky and hilarious story of a tall woman who lived in a house FULL of collected items. These items included tax receipts FULL of numbers, a dried sunburn peel from the 70’s, scabs, and other interesting (and kind of gross) things.
Especially hilarious was the LOVE ROOM scene in which the Collector danced around a red washed stage and told us about the room full of collected and bottled emotions.
Johnston sang hilarious numbers about tax receipts as well as touching stories like the love affair between her pet chickens William Tell and Rosie. These were all executed with such still and skillful presence, emotion and comedy.
The dancing archivist, played by Lisa O’Neill, opened up from her regular silent role to reveal a hilarious and cutesy story of teacups she used to collect as a child. As she stood by the very tall microphone we heard how she would place them around her head at night to keep her feeling calm. It was quite strange but incredibly interesting.
Along with the regular instruments you’re used to seeing in a band, RRAMP pulled out a set of colorful bells to dangle and shake. (Think old school bell ringing mixed with gothic style and you’ve got the quirky idea!)
Peter Nelson’s trumpeting and emotionless face was also great in his character of the Electrocrat and the sound scape he created was just outstanding.
Even a handsaw played with a violin bow was included in the band’s line-up which was very impressive.
The animation and lighting was outstanding. The hand drawn animation was created by the fantastic Melbourne based Ahmarnya Price and the ambient lighting was designed by David Walters.
I absolutely loved this performance of quirky, hilarious art-meets-fashion-meets unique theatre and I believe YOU will too. Check out when it is in a theatre near you.
You won’t be disappointed.