Three Birds One Cock

Fresh from the Melbourne Fringe 2015, Three Birds One Cock descends upon Star Theatre and grips the audience from the moment they take their places on the red vinyl seats. It's a simple recipe: a plain interior, three women, one body bag, and a whole lot of questions! Who is this woman? Why is she dead? Are we next?

The three women represent the damsels from the Hitchcock classics Vertigo, Psycho and The Birds, who proceed to question why they are the victims of such violent and gruesome deaths.

The show is dialogue heavy, but in the most divine way possible. The writing is unexpectedly clever and the delivery flawless. As the three birds contemplate their impending doom and speculate the cause of the mysterious blonde's death, their characters are further revealed.

Madelaine Nunn presents a sassy Marion, the victim of the famous shower scene from Psycho. Her accent never falters, and she doesn't miss a beat. She is like a tireless firecracker bursting with contagious energy. The scenes in which the three women speak synchronously gave me goosebumps. Anna Rodway portrays a convincing Melanie Daniels from The Birds, a spoiled socialite aloof of the everyday housewife's duties. Her piercing scream will haunt my dreams to come. Finally, Candace Miles brings to life Madeleine from Vertigo, who plunges to her death in the original motion picture. Miles is absolutely engaging on stage, and for me the stand-out of the show. Her energy and commitment to the performance are very impressive.

The show is loaded with Hitchcock references, and die-hard fans will have a field day. Even those who have never seen a Hitchcock classic in their life will appreciate the terrific acting, witty dialogue and the ever-shifting sense of unease that makes the audience jump at least twice.

I raise my glass to these women, who dared question their unsavoury fates, and struggle against their puppet-master's relentless quill. This black comedy is ripe with humour, drama and suspense that will leave you guessing until the very end. If you have every wanted to see 1950's American housewives contemplate death with shocking frankness, then this is the show for you! It's the style of Grace Kelly, the gore of slasher movies and the vengeful flavour of "Cell Block Tango" from Chicago all rolled into one delicious body-bag.

★★★★