Posted by Milk Bar Mag on 1/3/16.
Ladies and gentlemen, it is time for you all to spread your wings and fly beyond your horizons, as you immerse yourself in a whole new experience that you’ll never forget. The Boon Companions are an anonymous art collective who love to host immersive theatre parties for those of you who want to delve into a new exciting world. They are about to host a party called the ‘Cast Party’ and it is going to envelop you all into a backstage setting of a Bob Fosse musical in 1979.
The party is scheduled to start the minute the curtain goes down on opening night; audience members will enter through the stage door, and you will all become part of the cast who are letting their hair down after the show. The party is set in the entire back area of the National Theatre of the orchestra pit, the studios, the theatrette, the ballet warm up room and the dressing rooms.
The beauty of the Cast Party is that you can shape your own experience while you’re there; the sky is the limit, so it is up to you to explore the various rooms that await your presence. You could be interacting with one of the actors in their dressing room, or you could be watching a performance in the orchestra pit, or grabbing a drink from the bar; either way, the choice is yours as you get to create your own reality. Nobody will be approaching you or thrusting you into some complicated act; you can interact as little or as much as you want with the performers, because it is entirely up to you on how you address your surroundings.
You can meander in and out of the studios, you can get your hair and makeup done in the dressing rooms if you want, or put on a leotard just to get your party animal on. There are lots of opportunities for you to relax as though it’s your own after party, and you can engage with the performers as much as you want; if you do decide to interact with one of them, they will play their role according to their character and you will get to witness the narrative unfolding before you. Just a warning: if you decide to bring a friend, don’t expect to share the same experiences – there is so much going on in each room and each character has a different story to tell, so you never know what you might stumble upon next.
The Boon Companions have hosted several parties in the past; their first party they did was the Fake Wedding Reception, which involved characters for the bridesmaids, the best man and the DJ, as well as people around the room. Audience members spoke to the different characters, and depending on who they spoke to, they would form different ideas about the bride and the groom, as well as what happened at the service. They also got to dance and feel as though they were part of the crowd at the wedding reception.
Nothing is more awesome than having to dress up to a theme for a party, and the theme for the Cast Party is backstage ’70s musical, which includes leotards, tights, legwarmers and whatever your heart desires. You’ll feel as though you’ve stepped into a time machine and arrived at a ’70s wonderland, so make sure you arrive there close to doors when they open at seven, since it is a theatre event as well as a party, and you do not want to miss all the fun that the Cast Party has planned for you.
The National Theatre, 20 Carlisle Street, St Kilda
Friday March 4, 7pm-11pm