So there is a production I missed! A pity. I just bought a second-hand copy as one of my smaller band of coachees is studying it for the HSC 2006.
First produced in 1992, Cosi has become one of the most popular and successful Australian plays in the last decade. It’s a comedy about illusion and delusion, about eccentricity and being different. “Real madness and angst only occurred when I worked with professional actors” Louis Nowra stated at the time. Cosi is also a brilliant tribute to the transformative power of the theatre.
Set in a mental institution, while the world protests against the madness of the war in Vietnam, a young student, Lewis, takes on the task of directing asylum inmates in production of Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte in a burnt out old hall. As these extraordinary ‘patients’ touch his life and his operatic production threatens disaster, Lewis learns that when chasing your dreams it helps to be a little crazy. On one level, Cosi is a poignant look at life through the eyes of people who can’t cope with the real world; on another, it’s a hilarious take on the madness of creative endeavour and the chaotic terror of getting up there on stage and making a fool of oneself.