19 May 2012

The Heretic

Well, MTC's production is a bit verbose and repetitious at times, but Noni Hazlehurst and the cast turn on a good performance in The Heretic.   Hazlehurst's down-to-earth character is a stark contrast to the others, who are over-the-top and often frantic to the point of being almost absurd at times. The theme of the need for scientific rigour and the danger of being compromised in the quest for sponsorship is interwoven with inter-generational challenges and the seriousness of youth (especially, how to relate your strongly held principles with the requirement to exist on a day-to-day basis).

Even though there are a few twists and turns, it's a bit drawn-out, and the coarse language is at times (in my view) overdone (but I would say that, wouldn't I?)  There's some good humour.  It's often pretty black, and just occasionally you have to listen to discern it through the slight traces of Yorkshire dialect that are incorporated.

This is a satirical play, taking a swipe at just about everyone, not a scientific paper.   So, I was amused at some of the self-righteous commentary on the internet (such as https://theconversation.edu.au/heretic-melbourne-theatre-company-runs-with-the-goons-6871) that severely criticise MTC for daring to put on The Heretic.   I fear that the writers of such commentaries have missed the point.  Perhaps they just serve to illustrate it?

Since first posting the above, I discover that Quadrant, too, has commented on the issue.  In the interests of completeness (or whatever), here's the link:  http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-planet/2012/05/on-with-the-play

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