Plenty of Fish in the Sea @ PACT Theatre

Verdict: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5 (reviewed 6 September)

It’s always nice to see a show again after it has been revised and reworked, like a stew that keeps getting better and better. Yep, we’re talking about the remarkable work that is Plenty of Fish in the Sea, previously reviewed at Flying Nun in Darlinghurst. This iteration is part of Sydney Fringe’s Made in Sydney program.

Starring Emily Ayoub and Madeline Baghurst who are the show’s creators and directors, and joined by Christopher Samuel Carroll, this allegorical journey in a little French village is full of fishy surprises. A nun and her acolyte have quite a catch on their hands, a full blooded male, to be precise, after rescuing him from drowning. They put him to work to help them fish for the largest catch of all to make the best sumptuous stew in honour of their patron saint, Saint-Cotriade. But, having a man around where men aren’t really in abundance, one thing leads to another…

The props, sound effects and tableaux are extraordinary, jolting the audience with strangeness and wonder. One minute they are drinking soup slowly, languidly, while the next getting high, getting wild, and getting it on. Maybe someone put magic mushrooms in the soup, who knows? But the resulting freak out is very effective.

This version is a fair bit more abbreviated than the one reviewed earlier this year, which also had the benefit of subtitles. It’s not necessarily a dealbreaker, when this kind of storytelling relies more on the actions rather than words. Silence is Golden after all, as referenced in the play.

The previous version also made more obvious references to the parallel between making a catch and shallow dating culture. The emphasis here seems to be more on the climatic shock value.

On a final note, while the show is rated PG, there are simulations of raunchy sex and topless nudity. We’re no prudes, but be warned!

Still, it’s a wonderful gem to enjoy again, and highly recommend seeing it with its bookended billing of short plays (Betty is a Butcher and Blacklisted) to enjoy an all round, satisfying night at the theatre.

Plenty of Fish in the Sea, presented by Clockfire Theatre Productions, is playing at PACT Theatre until 9 September. For tickets and showtimes, go to

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *