A PLAY from an award-winning NYPD Blue writer comes to the Melville Theatre this September, evoking the themes of Pygmalion and My Fair Lady with a more intense approach for 2014.
Written by Theresa Rebeck and directed by Trevor Dhu, Spike Heels is a contemporary comedy of manners set in Boston that explores sexual harassment, misplaced amour and the possibility of a four-sided love triangle.
The play features a sexy, volatile young woman and her involvement with a university professor, lawyer and uppercrust rich girl in a battle of what the heart wants against physical attraction.
Rebeck has won the Writers Guild of America Award, Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Award and Peabody Award for her work on the television show NYPD Blue, along with numerous theatre awards.
“Spike Heels is similar to Pygmalion and My Fair Lady in that it looks at an uneducated, disadvantaged woman who can learn and gain from a beneficiary male,” Dhu said.
“If you make that theme more current, the sexual attraction is much more exposed and fades to respect, want and love from man to woman.
“While the women battle for sexual supremacy, inspired by female liberty to have sex when inclined, the men battle those urges to gain a true relationship rather than a one-off.”
One of the main challenges for Dhu is the strong language and sexual references in the show, initiated by the female characters.
“But these are typical of Generation Y, so it’s an accurate portrayal of how things really are – yet not seen by the baby boomer generation,” he said.
Involved in the performing arts for as long as he can remember, Dhu has worked with Patch and Playhouse Theatres, Perth City Ballet and did extensive professional work with the Australian Dance Theatre in the eastern states.
More recently, he has directed, choreographed and acted in various productions at the Mandurah Performing Arts Centre – most notably West Side Story – and also performed at Harbour, Roleystone and Melville Theatres.
Dhu was inspired to direct Spike Heels after a friend studying theatre and film in Los Angeles shared the play with him.
“Her theatre coach gave her the play because it reflected her past and was perfect for developing her performance potential,” he said. “Looking at the story of my friend’s life, there was a lot of similarity to this play.
“She learnt in her life journey to gain knowledge that makes her a financially secure, single mother who continues to learn
“Spike Heels is a difficult play but I like the emotional swings and how the male psyche tries to hold onto ethics, which is an element that bubbles along under the plot.”
Spike Heels plays at 8pm, September 12, 13, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26 and 27 with a 2pm matinee September 21. Tickets are $20, $15 concession – book on (08) 9330 4565 or at www.meltheco.org.au.
Please note: this play has sexual references and a strong language warning.
Melville Theatre is on the corner of Stock Road and Canning Highway, Palmyra.
spike1: Spike Heels, featuring Julian Tubb, Hope Devaney, Lee Walker and Kelly Hammond, is a provocative comedy that explores the power play between the sexes. Picture: Guido Nigro
spike2: Georgie (Hope Devaney, right) is a sexy, volatile young woman in Spike Heels with Julian Tubb as Edward. Picture: Guido Nigro
spike3: Georgie (Hope Devaney, left) and Lydia (Kelly Hammond) battle for sexual supremacy in Spike Heels this September. Picture: Guido Nigro
spike4: In Spike Heels, Georgie (Hope Devaney, left) puts her foot down with Andrew (Lee Walker). Picture: Guido Nigro
spike5: It’s sexy and volatile versus cultured and educated when Georgie (Hope Devaney, left) and Lydia (Kelly Hammond) come together in Spike Heels. Picture: Guido Nigro
The Melville Theatre Company was the brainchild of David J. Burton who, in 1982, called a meeting for interested people in the community to form a theatre company in the Melville area.
As a result, the Melville Theatre Company was born. The newly formed company's first production was the farce, Not Now Darling. With its second production, The Sound of Music, the young company won the Finley Award for the Best Production of the Year in Community Theatre. Since then, actors and directors have consistently featured in the list of awards at the annual State Drama Festival, now known as Dramafest.
Initially, performances were in the Melville Civic Centre but, since 1987, the venue has been the Roy Edinger Centre, on the corner of Stock Road and Canning Highway, Palmyra.
P: 0409 373 374