'An Ideal Husband' is award-winning playwright Lewis Treston’s (read our interview with Lewis) hilarious makeover of Oscar Wilde’s effervescent social satire that for all its melodrama and farce, offers poignant insight into human frailty.
Running rife with themes of corruption, hypocrisy and blackmail, 'An Ideal Husband', with Bridget Boyle in the Director's chair, brings a late 1890s play into the Australia of the late 1990s – bright colours, house music and questionable politics included.
Here, Bridget lists Australia's top five political moments: “Please note, these are rated not in order of how amazing they are – more like the top five unforgettable moments. Some of them we’d all like to have forgotten. . .”
Paul Keating tells John Hewson “I want to do you slowly”, 1992. Probably not something you could get away with today, but the former PM’s response to opposition leader John Hewson’s insistence that he call an election is peak Paul Keating. This classic phrase features in 'An Ideal Husband' verbatim in a memorable seduction scene.
Scott Morrison brings a lump of coal into parliament, 2017. From the sublime to the ridiculous. Yep, Scott Morrison actually brought a lump of coal into parliament and told everyone it was “nothing to be afraid of”. Our taxes hard at work there. There’s a scene in 'An Ideal Husband' where the villain pulls a random lump of zinc out of his pocket which is directly inspired by this act of parliamentary stupidity.
Jacqui Lambie’s speech about university fee hikes. This is actually incredible, and you should all watch it. It’s an example of a very real, honest person who is trying their best to be a good politician, speaking directly from the heart. Watch it without crying, I dare you.
Scott Morrison tackles a kid just before the election 2022. What can be said? It’s like he wanted to lose. To be honest, I can’t stop watching this.
THAT SPEECH – Julia Gillard, 2012. Again, let the speech speak for itself. It’s got its own oxygen now and rightly so. We looked at some of the rhythms of a successful political speech for some of the speeches in 'An Ideal Husband'.
'An Ideal Husband' plays La Boite Theatre (Brisbane) until 6 August.