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City Voice Images: Washed Up


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CAPTION: Washing machine Melanie puts Omo (Mike Oldershay, left) and Duncan (Neil Rea) in a bit of a spin. Photo - David Gurr. See http://cityvoice.co.nz

City Voice: Washed up

by Simon Vita

Washing machine metaphors abound in Ryan McFadyen’s play Suburban Appliance Tragedy. McFadyen says his tale of the slobbish Omo is “literal dirty laundry”. Omo is dumped by his girlfriend and is left to discover himself with a washing machine, his buddy Duncan and a new age bible The Inner Penis. McFadyen says the washing machine is “a female HAL [2001 A Space Odyssey] crossed with the plant from Little Shop of Horrors.” The devious machine helps Omo discover himself. Far fetched? Well consider the number of men who go through life without accepting domestic responsibility until they’ve cut the apron stings. McFadyen says once he lived in flat with no washing machine. Rather than going to the nearby laundry he and his flatmates visit a local op shop on $2-a-bag day and stock up on clean tee shirts. The play also gives insights into the men’s movement. Actor Neill Rea says, “It’s fair to say it comes on for a bit of scorn.” McFadyen says the play is a tragi-comedy full that’s both funny and sad. He adds the nice thing about handing it over to a director and cast is they give it their won emphasis and take it in ways he hadn’t imagined when writing it.

•Suburban Appliance Tragedy, 17-20 Feb, 23 Feb - 2 Mar, 8.30pm.

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