Henry and Amy set up a picnic blanket in a suburban park in New England, Connecticut. She’s an investment banker, he, a nurse. Their Sunday afternoon banter is highly amusing but at the same time reveals much about the current times, how the GFC has impacted on middle America.
Their soiree is disturbed when they are recognised by Max and Sara, who mosey over and join them. Max is a work mate of Amy’s, in fact he owns the bank where she works. The two couples try very hard to be nice to each other but insecurities and personal issues become apparent while scathing insults simmer just below the surface.
This dialogue driven comedy explores the themes of masculinity, gender expectations, possession and loneliness, money and ego. She Rode Horses Like the Stock Exchange is a skilfully written play that sustains and builds on humour and has fully multi-layered character development. Amelia Roper, the gay Australian playwright, now lives in Los Angeles and was named America’s Most Promising Theatre Artist at the 2014 National Theatre Conference.
The cast are award winning and multi-talented; Nikki Britton (Sara) also works as a stand-up comedian, and Tom Anson Mesker (Henry) and Matilda Ridgway (Amy) are both writers.
The play works so well and is so entertaining because it’s about nothing really, it’s just an encounter between two couples that encompasses big ideas, a type of crisis meeting of masculinity alongside feminism.
Until Nov 11. Kings Cross Theatre, Level 2, Kings Cross Hotel, Kings Cross. $20-$37. Tickets & Info: www.kingsxtheatre.com
Reviewed by Mel Somerville.