FRED @ Fringe Update #17

So much time has gone by since the idea of Michael and Phillip Are Getting Married in the Morning came to mind—just over a year, in fact. A lot has happened since then and yet the whirlwind of producing dictates that it has all gone too quickly to comprehend.

Phillip (Ryan Stewart) is confronted by the mysterious Bride (Bethany Griffiths).

For the cast, time spent working on Michael and Phillip Are Getting Married in the Morning was a twenty-week exercise in trust, understanding their respective characters, learning lines, and more. I won’t pretend to understand the mindset of an actor; it is perhaps not too different to a writer, but must be on the opposite side of the spectrum to a producer.

Because of this, I could not help but beam with pride as I saw their hard work materialise on stage. Yes, there are always improvements—the cast are far more critical on themselves than I am of them—but it can be difficult to focus on such things when your audience is embracing the show. And what an incredible and generous audience we had across all four nights, each offering a different vibe than the other to our cast. If our audience knew of the eleventh-hour complications that hit us prior to the show’s opening, they did not seem to notice or care. A roaring applause at each curtain call told the cast that they had done an exceptional job.

But this is something I have known all along. The cast are a wonderful group of talent that it feels fraudulent of me to take any credit for the show’s successes. Our audience was receptive, feedback has been encouraging, and Michael and Phillip Are Getting Married in the Morning gave FRED the ALIEN Productions its biggest single-sitting audience ever.

The tension between Graeme (Jeffrey Bryant Jones) and Michael (David McNamara) is evident in this scene, where Tally (Anna Reardon) and Simon (Hayden Gridley) look on.

It is perhaps too close since the final curtain call for me to truly take in the experience. As a first time director, mistakes were made—all forgivable ones, hopefully—but FRED the ALIEN’s culture dictates that these are seen as lessons and opportunities. I cannot say how this experience will impact on future projects, but for now, I will take a deep breath before heading into our next project… which will be the basis of tomorrow’s production meeting.

On behalf of the cast and crew of Michael and Phillip Are Getting Married in the Morning, I would like to thank you for joining us on FRED’s journey to Melbourne Fringe. We hope you have enjoyed the ride.

Wayne Stellini

Michael and Phillip Are Getting Married in the Morning

Graeme (Jeffrey Bryant Jones) receives some encouraging words from Tally (Anna Reardon) as Simon (Hayden Gridley) process the unfolding drama.













Blaine (Ben Campbell) encounters a remorseful Bride (Bethany Griffiths).

Michael (David McNamara) discovers that Tally (Anna Reardon) and Simon (Hayden Gridley) have a lot to answer for.













Tally (Anna Reardon) supports Michael (David McNamara) as his father Graeme (Jeffrey Bryant Jones) reaches out to him.













Finally at the altar! As Father Rob (Phillip Hunting) begins the ceremony, Tally (Anna Reardon) clutches on to Michael (David McNamara), and Phillip (Ryan Stewart) and best man Blaine (Ben Campbell) hope for no more interruptions.



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