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May 26, 2010 | by  | in Arts Theatre | [ssba]

Coffee Cups and a Porridge Pot at Frying Pan Lake

This show lives in two very distinct, if not totally different worlds. It’s a gig, but it’s not a gig. It’s a play, but it’s not a play. Rosy Tin Teacaddy, the charming Wellington folk band consisting of Billy Earl and Betty Grey (aka Andy Hummel and Holly Jane Ewens) wrote and perform the show which mixes in a rather staccato fashion performances of their songs and extended scenelets which detail the songs creation. Coffee Cups and a Porridge Pot at Frying Pan Lake tells the tale of their 2009 Creative New Zealand funded trip to a cabin near Mount Tarawera to write their latest album.

Neither side of this show’s flipped coin of performance genre is any kind of failure. The music is, as a matter of course, wonderfully performed and delightfully listenable. The theatrical interludes (directed by Hannah Clarke and lit by Marcus McShane) are well achieved and designed, full of some exceedingly fine images and effortless spectacle. These interstitial moments, however, do quickly begin to run bit too long. Extended sequences of both band members reading from their journals very rapidly fall into being unwarrantedly self-indulgent.

The performers talents very clearly lean much more the musical than the theatrical. The fact simply lies that they are not actors flicks often across the show in the form of dead moments and needlessly mumbled lines.

But, no matter. These is a real sense achievement in Coffee Cups and a Porridge Pot at Frying Pan Lake, as if the very fact of pulling it off is enough. The music is great, the pictures are pretty, the lights are great. A good time to be had for all.

19-05 – 22-05-2010 / BATS theatre (

written and performed by Rosy Tin Teacaddy
directed by Hannah K. Clarke


About the Author ()

Uther was one of the two arts editors in 2009. He was the horoscopier and theatre writer in 2010. Alongside Elle Hunt, Uther was coeditor in 2011.

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