Beatles a challenge to certainty

“ALL the lonely people”…..Sounds familiar? Yes, as any fan of the Fab Four knows, it comes from the Beatles’ song, “Eleanor Rigby”.

shadowIt is also the title of the fourth in the “Without a Voice” series being hosted at Smith’s Alternative in Canberra by director of Shadow House PITS and Citynews reviewer, Joe Woodward.

Normally we would expect something totally avant-garde from Woodward and not perhaps beautiful music of The Beatles performed live by Damien Foley, so it comes as no surprise to find that in the lyrics of Beatles songs, Woodward finds “the essence of uncertainty”.

Songs like the aforementioned “Eleanor Rigby”, “In My Life”, and “Girl” will, Woodward predicts, “generate memory and familiarity”.

Comic favourites, the Krewd Sisters, Katie Woodward and Anna Voronoff, begin the evening and are joined by Sam Williams, Miriam Slater, Lucy Matthews and friends.

Oliver Baudert, directed by Desiree Bandle, plays a “Father McKenzie”-like figure tries to restore a kind of order as the “ceremony” gets under way. Two ‘lost figures’ played by Lucy Smith and Hannah Lawson are ill-at-ease as the McKenzie character invites readings and ritual.

Damien Foley returns with his own musical interpretations of Beatle songs. And Woodward himself will make an appearance in “a new guise.”

As for the “Without a Voice” series, he likens it to the guest in Coleridge’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” calling it “essentially a ceremony that is interrupted by an unwanted stranger; the ritual is disturbed and leads to personal challenge.”

This episode in “Without a Voice” is the first for 2014 and will continue every two months throughout 2014.

Shadow House PITS is looking for performers and audiences for explorations within literature, art, music and ideas. As Woodward says, “‘Without a Voice’ is not conventional theatre [it] is a self contained venture into an aspect of the cultural and personal psyches.” Those interested can contact Woodward on 61613060 or by email at

“All the lonely people,” at Smith’s Alternative Bookshop, Alinga St Civic, 8.30pm on Jan 21. Bookings essential to


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