The Adelaide Show Podcast putting South Australian passion on centre stage


Bordertown Holden Street









Things we loved

  • A quirky story that becomes surreal
  • Some sizzling one-liners
  • Strong cast

Things we would reconsider

  • Did we need a moralising ghost?
  • Bordered on pantomime in parts

There’s a little Patricia Barnes in us all, that’s what playwright, Matt Hawkins, wants us to believe through his latest play, Bordertown.

Patricia is a hairdresser who claims to have given locally-born, former prime minister, Bob Hawke, his famous hairstyle, the “silver bodgie”.

Did she?

Or did she take stories that circulated about his unexpected salon visit and groom them into a mythology that made her part of Bordertown’s story?

What would we have done?

In the case of Bordertown, we follow the story of Patricia’s drive to reclaim the spotlight. She attempts this by arranging to add some temporary colour into the life of her daughter, Felicity.

Patricia arranges for Felicity to work as a makeup artist on the Hollywood set of a new movie by “B grade” actor, Emilio Sanchez. However, the young girl from Bordertown catches the actor’s eye and the couple’s romantic adventures twinkle amid the lights of LA and the gossip magazine headlines of Australia.

Celebrity has returned to the family!

But nothing goes well for any of the characters in the second act, as the play embodies the comedically surreal plot twists of the sort of Hollywood movie Emilio is famous for.

The players play as the interval drinks help the audience’s suspension of disbelief remain in place, even though it is tested by the appearance of a moralising ghost whose mission seems too earnest for the rest of the protagonists.

But all’s well that ends well and we have a fun and feisty addition to the library of the South Australian Playwrights Theatre.

Now the remaining question for parents is, will you still fashion those lovely photos of your babies and children to help boost your social media equity?


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