Review of Highway of Lost Hearts by Elise Lawrence

A dynamic one-woman show about reclaiming ourselves from loss.

Review of May 18 performance, by Elise Lawrence

Minola Theatre will perform Highway of Lost Heart at Seven Hills Hub from May 9-10 and 16-18. More information is available on the event page.

A dynamic one-woman show about reclaiming ourselves from loss.

Mary Anne Butler’s play Highway of Lost Hearts follows Mot on her road trip through the Australian outback, from Katherine to Dubbo, driving the 4,500kms with only her dog and her van. The audience is privy to her inner monologue on this journey as she seeks to reclaim parts of herself from the void of loss, considers her place in the universe, and wrestles with her grief in her own way, on her own terms.

Bianca Butler Reynolds was magnetic, holding the audience’s rapt attention for over an hour, alone on stage except for a large red suitcase, and without a stumble or dropped line in that time. The outdoor amphitheatre had wonderful acoustics, illuminated by a full moon as well as the stage lights, and she did an incredible job of projecting her voice from all corners of the performance space – she could be heard clearly even over the roar of planes as they passed overhead a few times during the performance.

This work, directed by Kat Dekker, and the intense, emotive delivery by Bianca Butler Reynolds brought to life the beautiful and visceral imagery of the script, the contrasts of untouched beauty and dangerous isolation. She switched her body language and voice to embody each person (and occasional animal) she encountered, and frequently personified her canine companion – her final howls at the moon sent shivers down my spine.

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