‘The Reunion’ // Minerva Theatre Co and Anywhere Festival

‘The Reunion’ was nostalgic.

Minerva Theatre Co’s ‘The Reunion’ is an immersive comedic performance that takes audiences on a trip back to high school, with all its drama, tension, and awkwardness. Presented by the Minerva Theatre Co. and Anywhere Festival, the show invites audience members to attend the 10-year reunion of the Mt. St. Celine class of 2013, complete with memorabilia photos and nametags.

The night began slowly, with audiences greeting each other at their assigned tables and chatting as if we were all old high school friends. Each table was joined by a performer that chats with the group like old schoolmates do, whilst cleverly trickling in juicy gossip from our school days and updates about what’s happened in their lives since. The table I was sitting at was joined by Ben Dover, played by Lachie Mackie, a typical class clown turned tradie. Mackie did a great job at keeping the conversation fun and jovial whilst cleverly guiding the topics toward the storyline that was later revealed.

The host of the reunion, Mackenzie, played by Dom Ryan, was somewhat awkward but still charismatic while walking the audience back down memory lane. Ben the jokester spent a lot of the show antagonizing Mackenzie who kept needing to tell him off. The night featured a reflection on the class’s old high school awards like “Voted most likely to drop out of uni”, and a game of trivia based on events from 2013. Although my table won, the prize was simply a handshake from the host.

However, it was as if the host was trying to close the event when the show truly kicked off. Ben leapt from his seat and stole the microphone to do a karaoke serenade and a surprise proposal which did not go well. Suddenly, all four performers who had been sitting at each table were jumping up and adding to the drama, revealing infidelity, a surprise pregnancy, and unveiling the truth behind old rumours. The show crescendoed into a classic high school drama, where all the gossip we’d been hearing finally came to light.

The format of the show, with performers joining each table, added to the feeling of high school drama. The audience was left wondering who was who, and what each table might be gossiping about. However, it was a shame that there wasn’t much drama or tension built before the final scene. The show felt awkward and slow at first, much like high school, but once the drama broke free the show had all the excitement and tension of a classic coming-of-age flick.

Overall, ‘The Reunion’ was an entertaining and immersive performance, transporting the audience back to their high school years and allowing them to experience all the drama, tension, and awkwardness that comes with it. The performers did a great job of engaging with the audience and bringing the show to life, and the format of the show was a unique and exciting way to present the story.

‘The Reunion’ performs until Friday, 19 May at Blutes, and Saturday, 27 May at The Hills Community District Centre. For more information visit their website.

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