Theatre | Rooftop revelations | Ken Longworth

OUT IN THE OPEN: Tony Gluck, as a lawyer, and Timothy Blundell plays a security guard in The Fix. Photo: Phillip Ross of Hunter&King
OUT IN THE OPEN: Tony Gluck, as a lawyer, and Timothy Blundell plays a security guard in The Fix. Photo: Phillip Ross of Hunter&King

IT is not surprising that rehearsals for Knock&Run Theatre’s new play, The Fix, are taking place on a high-rise building rooftop in Newcastle West.

The play, by Newcastle writer and director Dez Robertson, is set on a rooftop, where two men – one a lawyer, the other a security guard – accidentally meet when they go there for different reasons.

The lawyer has faced increasing problems and has decided to commit suicide by jumping off the roof. The security guard has snuck away from his workplace to have a quick smoke, because he is prohibited by his employer from smoking on the job.

The men, initially reluctant to acknowledge each other, get involved in a conversation that reveals more and more about them and their backgrounds.

The Fix, which will premiere at Newcastle’s intimate Royal Exchange venue on October 25, is being directed by Dez Robertson. It features Tony Gluck as the lawyer and Timothy Blundell as the guard.

A rooftop is being used for the rehearsals to get the two actors used to moving around such a space in the one-act play’s hour-long running time.

The play grew from an exercise Robertson had to do as part of a creative writing course. He was required to set the scene for a play in a single sentence, and wrote that it had a businessman on a rooftop and showed how he was feeling.

A year later, as part of another writing exercise, he decided to develop it into a play, adding the character of a security guard.

Robertson notes that the play has a lot of dark comedy in the men’s conversation and reactions, as they are stuck in a place where they are forced to communicate with the only other person.

“It’s the first time the two have opened up to anyone about their pasts,” he said. And he was careful not to trivialise or sensationalise the characters. 

The lawyer and the guard both try to get each other to leave the roof when they arrive within a couple of minutes of each other.

Tony Gluck said the middle-aged lawyer has faced increasing problems. A gay man whose relationship has come to an end, he has found himself in a hostile environment. He was raised a Catholic and doesn’t get on with his father.

Tim Blundell reveals that the straight-laced security guard not only has issues with his father but with his mother as well. And the two men’s back stories gradually come out in their conversations, as they try to give reasons for each other to leave the rooftop.

The Fix has 8pm shows at the Royal Exchange nightly from  October 25-28. Tickets, $20, are available from stickytickets.com.au.