The latest play at Kings Cross theatre ( KXT) is ‘American Beauty Shop.’ I saw the final preview and it is wonderful theatre. This is a dark play, which explores the theme of generational poverty in America post GFC.
Theatre is all about great acting, and this cast is fabulous. Amanda Stephens Lee is a veteran of independent theatre and is always flawless. Her portrayal of Sue, a hairdresser with well laid plans to make a success of her life is utterly convincing. Charmaine Bingwa, as her hairdressing salon employee is exquisite. I last saw her this year in ‘Doubt’ for which she received brilliant reviews. Janine Watson is a multi award winning actress who is also a stalwart of independent theatre. She imbues her characters with incredible charisma, and her talent is well utilised as Sue’s wayward sister Doll. An actress whom I have not seen previously ,Caitlin Burley, is excellent as Sue’s daughter and Jill Mackay is ever charismatic as Sue’s faithful client.
American Beauty Shop is a very strong piece, entertaining from the opening scene, and offers a commentary on the difficulty faced in emerging from welfare and poverty in the U.S. It reminds us that we do not want to become a less egalitarian society than we are.
This play has a two week season- do not miss it.