A Fool in Love

STC Contessa Treffone and Melissa Kahraman star in A Fool in Love photo by Rene VaileSydney Theatre Company’s production of the uproarious, whip-smart romantic comedy A Fool in Love, written by award-winning author, playwright and social commentator Van Badham, will have its world premiere at Wharf 1 Theatre in February 2024.

This bold, bawdy and gut-bustingly funny new Australian work marks the STC directorial debut of Resident Director Kenneth Moraleda and features the sublime comedic talents of Arkia Ashraf (The Dictionary of Lost Words), Alfie Gledhill (The Tenant of Wildfell Hall), Melissa Kahraman (Hubris & Humiliation), Johnny Nasser (Grand Horizons), Contessa Treffone (On the Beach), Aaron Tsindos (No Pay? No Way!) and Megan Wilding (The Importance of Being Earnest).

Adapted from Spanish ‘Golden Age’ playwright Lope de Vega’s classic La dama boba, A Fool in Love brings all the joy and revelry of a seventeenth century farce, bolstered by a hearty dose of twenty-first century social satire.

Badham’s razor-sharp take on gender and class politics is given a uniquely Australian twist as it cheekily lampoons our modern obsession with wealth and status, while leaving just enough time for a selfie session by the pool!

“The greatest Australian virtue is our readiness to laugh at ourselves,” said Badham. “What an honour it is to let loose the local sense of humour on a classic farce like Lope de Vega’s La dama boba, in which an aspirational scheme to marry off an heiress comes so spectacularly undone.

A Fool in Love is my love letter to the Spanish master as much as it is to the hilarious Australian obsessions of wealth, class and status, as ambitious boys from the ‘burbs come crashing into the poolside lives of the water-view elite.

“It’s a joy to work with the brilliant Kenneth Moraleda and this exceptionally funny cast who share my belief that truly great theatre is a rollicking good time,” said Badham.

In the well-heeled seaside town of Illescas, the beautiful Otavio sisters – the smart and social climbing Vanessa (Kahraman) and the lovable and, perhaps, not-so-smart Phynayah (Treffone) – are desperate to save their family from financial ruin.

To inherit her eccentric uncle’s fortune, Phynayah must get engaged before she turns 30. The catch? These days, suitors don’t just want beauty, they expect brains as well.

The creative team includes Isabel Hudson (Set & Costume Designer), Benjamin Brockman (Lighting Designer), Michael Toisuta (Composer & Sound Designer), Ruth Little (Dramaturg), Eve Beck (Assistant Director), Tim Dashwood (Fight Director) and Chloë Dallimore (Intimacy Coordinator).

A Fool in Love
Wharf 1 Theatre – Wharf 4/5, 15 Hickson Road, Walsh Bay (Sydney)
Season: 12 February – 17 March 2024 (previews: 6 – 9 February)
Information and Bookings: www.sydneytheatre.com.au

Image: Contessa Treffone and Melissa Kahraman star in A Fool in Love – photo by Rene Vaile