THE title Two Canaries doesn’t conjure up images of melting glaciers, rising sea levels or sinking islands.
But this farcical play is proof that you can tackle climate change in an entertaining and frivolous manner.
Two friendly canaries (Jess Nanda Moyle and Zoe Street) travel from the Arctic to the streets of Perth, where they encounter dangerously high sea levels.
They humorously “Tweet” as they drift between their bird and human personas; skilfully weaving stories about climate change with personal loss.
Moyle dreams of a future in which she has her own “fat dumb baby” – a dream undermined by the impending flooding of the stage and destruction of the natural environment.
The stage does literally fill with water over the course of the play, leaving the performers stranded on sinking rocks.
Theatre lights flash across the water creating an enchanting kaleidoscope, and vivid projections show the effects of climate change on the Arctic and Pacific regions.
An imaginative musical score is brought to life by violinist Brooke Wilson, and Moyles and Street occasionally burst into song. As the play unfolds there is a sense that the truth we know it is unraveling, giving way to the destructive natural forces at work.
Like the “canary in a coal mine”, the play is a warning we must all heed. Two Canaries is at the Blue Room Theatre in Northbridge until September 28. For details see blueroom.org.au/events/two-canaries/
by ALEX MURFETT