An Ideal Husband – dir. by Hunter Easterbrook: Pitt St Theatre (8-11 May) (Theatre Review)

AN IDEAL HUSBAND is a comedic play by Oscar Wilde first performed in London in 1895. A man must stop his wife from finding out that he’s built his entire career on selling out a political secret. The play exposes the problems with high society and deals with complex moral themes in a comic way.

Well, it seems like the Pitt Street Theatre turned into a den of deception and bribery, but hey, isn’t that just the ideal setting for a Wilde play? With characters energetic butterflies and makeup heavier than a politician’s promises, it sounds like quite the spectacle! 

An Ideal HusbandFilled with deception, bribery and above all an ideal marriage.

An Ideal Husband is one of the classics by Oscar Wilde. This was a lovely interpretation by director Hunter Easterbrook and his lively young cast. The Pitt Street Theatre is a cozy classic space and was nearly full on this opening performance.

Sir Robert Chiltern, portrayed by Mark Clark, is a picture of diligence and sophistication as he occupies himself with the affairs of state at his desk. Clark’s portrayal captures Chiltern’s polished exterior while hinting at the inner conflicts brewing beneath the surface.

As characters are introduced the energetic Mabel played by Dena Li and the corrupt Mrs. Chevely played by Shaylee Edwards intrigued the audience. With quick character changes and comedic moments, it captured the audience’s attention quickly.

In the first act, amidst the lighter moments, tensions rose during a powerful argument between Sir and Lady Chiltern about honesty and morality. Mary Clark’s portrayal of Lady Chiltern was captivating, her eloquence and dialect adding depth to the scene. The emotional intensity reached its peak as the couple grappled with their beliefs, leaving an impact on the audience.

And let’s not forget Lord Goring, who I’m sure stole the spotlight with his aristocratic antics in act two with a wide range of emotion. He seemed to be the fan favourite — his childish demur and spoiled upper classism though also brought fondness and empathy of the character. Especially with his relationship with the Butler Phipps played by Marlowe McAngus who all so subtly stole a few moments with his canter.

Churches effortlessly switched the heavier dialogue with interactions with his incessant Father Lord Caversham by the energetic and multi-character Matthew Whitwell

Despite a few wardrobe malfunctions and dramatic overdoses, overall, a recommended show of the local theatre group that will be sure to entertain with its whit and drama.

Mrs. Peach

An Ideal Husband is on at Pitt St Theatre until 11 May. Tickets here.