Constantly bombarded with phone calls about misplaced printer toner and other office concerns, Victor O’Meara leads a stressful life. It’s a life that becomes more stressful still when Victor receives devastating news from a doctor, and when an Interpol agent later turns up at his door demanding to know about his father’s involvement in an as yet unsolved art heist.

In this dramatic, intense performance, the audience is taken on an epic journey across Europe as Victor tries desperately to solve the clues left by his father – the titular magician, The Great Ridolphi.

The fact that The Great Ridolphi is a one-man show allows its star,  Steve Turner, to really show off his acting chops. From the keen-eyed detective to the formidable Lydia to the angry and panicked Victor, Turner perfectly captures the essence of each character he takes on. While it’s no mean feat to play so many roles at once, Turner’s versatility ensures the show maintains a flawless rhythm for its duration.

The pacing of The Great Ridolphi deserves high praise: there is enough suspense to keep the audience guessing, without the show ever veering into sluggish territory. The hints, the allusions, the what-ifs are enthralling, and will undoubtedly find you craving answers to the ever-present mystery.

Also worthy of the limelight is the show’s best prop – a telephone box whose digital background changes to reflect every place Victor travels to. The phone box is an inventive mechanism by which to set the scene, and a clever visual reminder of Victor’s continent-wide struggle for a resolution.

Superbly acted – and with just the right amount of suspense – The Great Ridolphi is an action-packed, mystery-filled show designed to keep you on your toes.

Words: Morgan Laing

The Great Ridolphi, Underbelly, Aug 15-27, 1.25pm

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