FRINGE THEATRE – Damian Callinan: The Merger – Holden Street – 4.5K

By Peter Maddern

These are dark days for the Bodgy Creek Roosters Footy Club; no players, no money and clubrooms condemned and the problems only get bigger from there. The source of salvation and escape from a merger with their most hated rivals is not obvious.

Damian Callinan has crafted another delightful Australian tale; this reviewer very much enjoyed his World War I Diary of three years back. Like that work Callinan takes risks a plenty with his humour but only the most virtuous of virtue signallers could complain about where he draws the line.

More like an American football match than the chaos of Australian football, Callinan delivers a number of set plays with segues provided by the wonders of the country radio station.

If you have ever wondered why great Australian stories don’t travel far, well the hearty vernacular, local references and particularised bush accents made it almost incomprehensible for the young Frenchman sitting next to me – but it didn’t stop him fully embracing the audience’s raucous ovation at its conclusion.

If exception can be taken it was Callinan’s search for Twitter glitter with its refugee story; pity that no aboriginal Australians who have done so much for our indigenous game could make his team.

Sport and the arts don’t often meet and enjoy each other’s company but The Merger is great fun and even out of season it can only get the juices flowing for the winter competitions ahead and from memories of the past aroused. And, it provides great laughs.

Kryztoff Rating   4.5K

Leave a Reply