Jessica Marais (Packed to the Rafters) will perform together on stage for the first time with her on-screen boyfriend and off-screen fiancé James Stewart.
Jessica Marais and James Stewart will perform together in Louis Nowra’s classic Australian comedy Cosi at La Boite’s Roundhouse Theatre from 8 February to 8 March.
Cosi is the hilarious story of graduate theatre director Lewis, who has just landed his first job staging a production of Mozart’s comic opera Così fan tutte. The catch? The cast are all patients from a mental institution, none of whom can speak Italian or sing.
Set in a mental institution in the 1970s, Cosi will see the Roundhouse Theatre completely transformed into a burnt out theatre in a stunning design by Hugh O’Connor.
La Boite Artistic Director David Berthold, a long-time Louis Nowra collaborator, says Cosi has been an audience favourite since it was written in 1992.
Berthold says this production of Cosi makes it La Boite’s third production of the comedy in three venues over three decades.
“We first performed Cosi at Hale Street in 1993, and then again in 2003 as a co-production with the Queensland Performing Arts Centre at the Playhouse,” Mr Berthold says.
“This landmark new production is the perfect way to celebrate the tenth anniversary of La Boite’s move to the Roundhouse Theatre at Kelvin Grove.
“Audiences are in for a treat to see Jessica Marais and James Stewart performing together for the first time on stage, in very different roles to their Packed to the Rafters characters,” he says.
Cosi also brings together a brilliant cast of other well-known actors including Aaron Davison (Talking Back at Thunder), Jennifer Flowers (The Chairs), Amy Ingram (Trollop, Out Damn Snot), Benjamin Schostakowski (A Tribute of Sorts), Anthony Standish (End of the Rainbow) and Trevor Stuart (As You Like It, Design for Living).
In a case of life imitating art, the role of young theatre director Lewis will be played by Benjamin Schostakowski, who recently completed a degree in Directing at the National Institute of Dramatic Art.
“From a director’s perspective, it’s been such fun to see Ben step into this role and deal with this outrageous collection of larger-than-life characters,” Berthold says.