Win a double pass to The House
Anyone who’s ever felt an intense desire to possess a particular property will be able to relate to the emotions at the centre of Howick Little Theatre’s first production for 2021.
Entitled The House, the play is written by Brian Parks and directed by Ashton Brown.
It tells the story of the Redmonds, a couple who love their house possibly a little too much.
They sell the home to a younger couple, who have plans for it that the Redmonds disagree with.
When the two couples meet at the house to exchange keys and celebrate with a glass of bubbly, things don’t go as planned.
The Redmonds are played by actors Catherine Maunsell and Stephen Diver, with the younger couple played by Izzy Renton and James Calverley.
The play is a return to Howick Little Theatre for Brown, who appeared on stage in its 2020 production of Dead Simple.
He grew up in Howick, acted at the theatre for the first time at age 13, and directs middle school drama productions at Saint Kentigern College in Pakuranga.
Brown says The House is set in a nice suburban home in an unspecified part of the United States and all the action takes place in the living room.
When the two couples meet, their interaction is friendly, but “those masks start to slip and it unravels into an absolutely chaotic and offensive war of words”, he says.
“It’s very funny but these aren’t the nicest people.
“Once that becomes clearer the journey gets a lot darker and a lot funnier.”
Brown says the production’s cast has to use the script’s dialogue to create momentum for the audience.
“Like all conversations it builds and drops and then builds again.
“We had to find that rhythm ourselves because there are no scene changes.
“When I go to a play if there is a moment I’m not enjoying, the scene will change and it almost refreshes your experience of the show.
“When you don’t have that option it really makes it more about the dialogue and the focus is on the actors.”
Brown says the play will appeal to anyone who enjoys character-driven comedy.
“It’s four people in a room and they’re trapped in a circumstance.
“Once the facade comes down, reality sets in.
“It’s definitely for people who are very open-minded in terms of comedy.
“It might make people cringe as much as it makes them laugh.
“It has elements of stuff like the British version of [TV show] The Office, in that you don’t know if you’re laughing or wholly uncomfortable with the situation.”
The House, Directed by Ashton Brown
Howick Little Theatre, Sir Lloyd Drive, Pakuranga
Season: February 27 to March 20
The Times has two double passes to The House to give away. To go into the draw enter your details below before February 25. Winners will be notified by phone or email.