Boxman, by Daniel Keene

The thing about Daniel Keene plays is that they are a genre in themselves. One could say, ‘I’m going to a Keene’ as legitimately as they could say ‘I’m going to the theatre.’ And this institution has, in the recent years, become quite synonymous with director Matt Scholten (If Theatre,) -refer earlier post- who brings with him the ‘dream team’ in production; Designer (and old friend) Kat Chan, Lighting designer Lisa Mibus, Stage Manager Amy Bagshaw and Composer Ben Keene.

Boxman is a bespoke one-man show written for Terry Yeboah to perform, and for Matt Scholten to direct. This tight ship of a production has been tuned to near perfection, so that Keene’s writing resonates beautifully through Yeboah’s charming voice as Ringo, an African soldier now living in a home he has built where the audience congregate. It is bittersweet and poetic.  At the end, we are left with a touching insight into his past as we share his pain that cannot be removed. It seems like Matt Scholten has nailed it again.

Kat Chan’s set is an unabashed display of the incessant superficiality of cosumerism in a frenzy of supermarket catalogues cleverly superimposed against the rich emotional landscape we are taken through. Lisa Mibus’ lighting magically captures the lyrical states and Ben Keene’s soundscape lulls us into a tune that is in perfect harmony with Ringo’s story.

This play is worth seeing, and tickets are so hot even the director can’t get one. The C-Wood has given it 4.5 stars in The Age. Boxman runs until 26th November.


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