Every now and again I like to take a risk and subject myself to a piece of art about which I know nothing.  

It’s hit and miss.  But that’s the spirit of adventure.  Don’t stick with what you’re certain you will enjoy – take a risk, go out and see if there’s something out there you don’t know you like because you don’t know it exists.  

Independent theatre holds this kind of promise.

It can be gobsmackingly good or mesmerically terrible – like a boozy xmas lunch with the extended family.  (I know this to be true.  The police used to come to ours.  They would take some family members away.  We stopped have the big gatherings.)

Lucky for me – a dose of V.D. was a good thing.

V.D. is by the award-winning playwright Pete Malicki.  He gleaned research in part from being a professional masseuse in a previous life.

It’s the story of one girl’s epiphany about work, men, life and gin.  It explores what’s worth holding onto and what’s better to release.  It’s a clever, biting comedy with those ‘yep, been there’ moments.

Another feast in this play is actress Eliza St John.

It’s one thing to have the lead role.  It’s another thing entirely to carry the whole show complete with costume changes on stage and nothing else at all to help cue a forgotten line or assist with pacing.  Add to that doing various voices of all genders – with accents – and here’s an actress who is no starlet, no ingénue.  She also has an authentic beauty that doesn’t distract from her evolving talent.

Seeing Eliza in V.D. reminded me of a great piece of advice Angelica Huston gave aspiring actresses:

‘Don’t just be pretty, be magnificent!’

V.D. is a play to see.  Eliza St John is a talent to watch.

Performing now at the Old Fitz, Woolloomooloo.

* poor photo quality due to temperamental iPhone