The play was about a family of three, mother, father and daughter, all-living in a house, and is quite wealthy, and they have their own chauffeur. When we arrived, there was conflict between the daughter and the parents, because of her new boyfriend, who is taking the girl out of college, where she is studying law, and teaching her to do rap. There is always an argument going on, and in nearly every scene, there was a box, which had a rabbit in. The mother told the daughter that her father has got cancer, and has not got long to live. At this time the father is in the woods with the boyfriend, looking for firewood. He then tells the boyfriend that he has got cancer. Meanwhile back at the house, the driver arrives and his son is ill in hospital, and he asks, if he can have time off, to see him and she said, you would have to see my husband, so the driver went looking for the husband in the woods, and eventually finds him.
He then asked him, can I go and see my son, and he said “Yeah”, so they start to make their way out of the woods, and the driver gets a phone call, and its his wife, saying their child has died. He then tells her to put the phone on his cheek, so he can say his good byes. Then it goes back to the house, where the mother prepares the rabbit, because that is what her husband wanted to eat. They then sit down to eat, as in the last supper, they would have together. Rabbit is Frantic’s new show for Autumn 2003, and tours the UK from September to November. Rabbit is a snappy, surreal farce from one of Australia’s most promising playwrights, which will leave you feeling battered and bruised but thankful for small mercies. Artistic Director Steven Hoggett discovered this fantastic script whilst holidaying in Sydney last January. The show was about to open at The Griffith Theatre and after having read the script Steve realised he had found the play Frantic had been searching for.
The acting styles were all modern what I mean by this is that they were up-tempo and that they were saying all the new slang words. With traditional outlines, like mum and dad together, and daughter off to university. The boyfriend had an acting style of off the streets, and from the ghetto, because he was into rap music. You could see all the differences that he would have had to change to take up the role as spin.
The daughter, her character Madeline was very loud and rude, I think this was because of her new boyfriend Spin, and he was into rap, so she tried to get in his good books, by always swearing. Also she had a short temper with her parents, Her character was an attention seeker, and wanted everyone to look at her. The actress showed this by always raising her voice and everything she did she would over exaggerate it so they would look at her.
The mother Kate was in control of everything, and very flirtatious, she also had a glass of wine in her hand, all the time. She also spoke down to people as if they were lower class, her posture was upright, chin in the air, and back straight, so they resembled upper class. The actress was very demanding and she showed this with her body language. And the way she spoke was very articulate so you could hear everything she said.
The fathers character was very laid back, and seemed to bottle everything up and let it all out at the daughter, This added tension between the two characters, He was more like a teacher than a dad, who was always right and made sense of everything. The actor didn’t have to change his voice and I don’t think he had to try for this part. This helped the actor to change much more of his character to fit as the father his attitude started sort of relaxed but got more uptight as the play went on.
The boyfriend Spin was very loud, but polite to the parents, he was more of a follower than a leader. He was into rap and took drugs. He thought he was really good and spoke like he was from the ghetto. He used to swear lot, and he would say something, and then explain what he meant. He had some really weird twitches, but towards the end you knew why, and it was the drugs. The actor was very good at changing his voice and body language. This helped to understand his character and why he was like what he was.
There was one movement piece, I remember the best, and it is the one where they turn around to sit down, then turn around to walk to another place, this one I found was the best, because they all done the movements at the same time, and it worked really well. The timing on this scene made it even better, where ever you looked, someone was moving and in the same way.
They used the whole space provided by walking, spinning and just talking in the movement piece, I just talked about. They used all the space provided even a tiny bit of space under the table, the space was not just used because it was there, they made is so it looked like they needed all of the space provided. They had this big box in the middle, but at the back of the stage, they did a couple of scenes using that.
The body language from all the characters was good, but one character showed more of it, and it was the mother when she stood still, talking to the daughter. She would have both hands on her hips, and leaning slightly forward, and even when she had a drink in her hand, she always had the other on her hip. This stood out for me, because the part and authority she showed by doing this.
You could see every expression on their faces, the father often showed that he was angry, and you could see that he was angry. The boyfriend showed he was confused a lot of the time, and you could see that he felt he did not fit in or understand, The mother showed that she was in control, because her facial expressions did not change a lot. But the daughter when she was angry, she still showed innocence in her facial expressions, by bowing her head and looking up.
In conclusion to this, I can see that because the man had cancer, and you could hear the rabbit scratching at the box, it meant that the rabbit was the cancer chipping, and scratching away at the fathers life. This is what I think because the scratching was constant and inconvenient, just like cancer. The father was trapped, either his family killed him through stress or the cancer would kill him and trapped like that rabbit in the box.