From the twisted, inspired house of Finucane & Smith, comes GOTHARAMA, unleashing the Gothic in all her wicked ways.
Welcome to the Chamber of the Queen of Dreams; Moira Finucane, the critics’ ‘beauty queen of the damned’, mutating before your very eyes ‘from sledgehammer to slow acting poison’ as she pecks the eyes out of the gothic feminine from her monstrous four poster bed.
GOTHARAMA, a faux Victorian Salon welcomes the audience to little tables covered in curiosities and tapestries, a Psychokinetic Pianist, dressed in spiky black bombazine tinkles the ivories, and a towering Canopy Bed looms, raised up on a red cruciform stage – part coffin, part wunderkammer, it rains, it bleeds. Like a pop-up picture book with a decidedly nasty streak, the bed-curtains draw back and Finucane’s thirteen gothic characters are unleashed. Mining a rich and varied vein – from bodice rippers to the supernatural, from Japanese horror to European gothic romance, from spiritual transcendence to B grade slashers – GOTHARAMA is a vicious variety with a twist in her tale. Open graves, nasty little stories, literary loucheness, malevolent boating, icy winds, consumptive showgirls, aortic spectaculars, raining beds, and lupine mothers. Gotharama takes a “spectacularly stunning” ghost train ride across forms and influences, delivering the gothic feminine in perverse, unexpected and thrilling ways.
Winner of two of Australia’s most prestigious theatre awards for design and innovation in form; GOTHARAMA is a ravishing blood red spectacle for a dark and stormy night.
Creators: Moira Finucane & Jackie Smith
Director: Jackie Smith
Text: Moira Finucane
Queen of Dreams: Moira Finucane
The Psychokinetic Pianist: Carolyn Connors
Set Designer: Anna Tregloan
Costume Designer: David Anderson
Lighting Designer: Paul Jackson
Sound & Music: Carolyn Connors & Darrin Verhagen
May 2010 Gotharama ‘exhumed’, new writing development, fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne.
Jan 2008 Salon excerpts, Carnival of Mysteries, fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne.
Jun 2006 Adelaide Cabaret Festival, Adelaide Festival Centre
Apr & May 2006 Victorian Arts Centre, Full TILT, Melbourne.
Jul 2005 premiere season fortyfivedownstairs, 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne
Gotharama premiered at fortyfivedownstairs in Melbourne supported by The Australia Council for the Arts, Arts Victoria, City of Melbourne and the Sydney Opera House Trust, and was further developed with the support of Full TILT.
Green Room Award Most Innovative Use of Form 2005
Green Room Award Best Design 2005
“Stunningly spectacular…Finucane shines…turning the most perfunctory shifts ( eg a sunny day turning to a cold day) into something particularly emotive. She may leave some of the audience perturbed, but that is the sign of an artist worth experiencing.”
“Moira Finucane’s perverse characters can portray evil as subtly as Rebecca’s Mrs Danvers, and are as over-the-top as any blood soaked character from a 1970’s B-grade horror film. Finucane is fantastic…beautifully crafted and kaleidoscopic”
“Delicious, unwholesome and perhaps a little rancid…one of the highlights of theatre this year”
“Given that the realm of the gothic embraces every kind of woman – from virgin child to withered crone – Moira Finucane is likely to have enough to occupy her wicked imagination for the rest of her life. And that is splendid, for few performers, except maybe Nick Cave, awaken the gothic as well as she.”
“Gotharama is such a spectacle, such a ravishing ride through the delicious dark side that is deserves to be watched by anyone with even the slightest interest in great performances. Even if you have to sell your soul to afford it, get yourself a ticket.”
“Jaw- smacked-wide- eyed wonderment ….! Gotharama’s twists and turns dog the audience as they’re enticed into a dark world which makes very few apologies and is often harshly confronting…. from gentle, poetically lush scenes to an all-out blood bath!”
“With supreme artistry, they have developed a highly theatrical performance style all of their own, utterly convincing and entirely original.”
“Darkly beautiful, witty and ironic….embracing everything from the gory, the overly-romantic, the old-fashioned, the opulent, the melodramatic – and all related through the timeless skills of a master raconteur”
“Many whisper that Moira Finucane is in league with the dark forces of the underworld, that no performer could possess so much presence and range of ability without selling their soul to evil”
“This is cabaret…but not as we know it. Moira Finucane as the Queen of Dreams is a masterful storyteller, spinning each tale as though casting a spell. A highly physical performer, at times she contorts and manipulates her body like it belongs to someone else – at others, she commands with an intense stillness. We see her terrify and stalk the stage like a spectre, but she also reveals a surprising emotional and performance range. This is such a clever and carefully constructed production – not a single moment is left to chance…On every level … exceptional”
“Finucane’s performance approaches the sublime, in the philosophical sense; tableaux which cannot be assimilated through any frame of reference except their own heightened hysterical brilliance”
“Finucane & Smith have unfurled the spindly tendrils of the Gothic into umpteen incarnations….Gotharama proves utterly absorbing.” INPRESS
“Like dreaming when you’ve got a fever… disturbing, unsettling, rich with symbolism and ridiculously hideous… exquisite. Moira Finucane is mesmerising.”