Jasper Jones Theatre Review

The small bush town of Corrigan holds more that its share of dark secrets. Secrets that colour the coming of age story about the bookish 14 year-old Charlie Bucktin (Nicholas Denton). When the town trouble maker Jasper Jones (Shaka Cook) involves him in a real life mystery, Charlie’s life changers forever.

Set in the dying days of 1965, the play pulls no punches is showing how difficult it was growing up in a small town where racial intolerance was the tone of the day and the grind of daily boredom was never far away. Into this environment Charlie, a boy who dreams large comes face to face with many of life’s ugly truths while he acts as the show’s narrator.

The play is presented in a brisk fashion, with the clever use of a revolving stage and having the actors play multiple roles to flush out the characters. The stage setting never lets you forget the small town origins while the score keeps you on the edge of your seat throughout with its ominous overtones.

Jasper Jones is an involving examination of the resiliency of the human spirit. It also makes a strong comment on the lack of progress that we as a society have made in the last fifty years.

Director: Sam Strong
Designer: Anna Cordingley
Lighting Designer: Matt Scott
Sounds Designer: Darrin Verhagen
Cast: Ian Bliss, Shaka Cook, Nicholas Denton, Rachel Gordon, Hayden Spencer, Hoa Xuande and Melanie Zanetti
Photographer: David Kelly

Jasper Jones is playing at the Playhouse, QPAC until the 18 August.
Rob Hudson