This show asks the question we’ve all dreaded to raise at some point: “so you two aren’t… [shimmies shoulders]?”
Salted Pretzels gives us a brief look into the complex, sometimes overwhelming world of what it means to be honest with ourselves and those we love.
The ensemble cast delivers a delightful tale which, on the surface, revolves around a first date which goes horribly right. We open at your neighbourhood pub replete with vintage lamp shades and art deco furniture (we all know one) and an awkward first interaction.
Anyone who has found themselves on the opposite side of a bar table with a perfect stranger will be painfully familiar with the stilted pace and rambling conversations about irregular topics the new couple experience. Anyone who has watched perfect strangers at a bar will be painfully familiar with how entertaining it is to predict how it’s all going for them.
Salted Pretzels written by Cezera Critti-Schnaars. Photography by Jessica Russel.
Beyond the surface, acceptance and radical candour is the message – with each character putting their heart on the line in the pursuit of love. At its best, Salted Pretzels shows us characters which each of us can relate to in different ways. We can all see ourselves in Dom (Cezera Critti-Schnaars) who uses perpetual first dates to escape what is standing right in front of her or James (Ray Teakle), who bravely sets boundaries to protect himself.
The role of the Waiter shines (Maitland Schnaars). He is the fairy godmother publican we all wish worked at our usual watering hole who isn’t afraid to call it like it is and tell our dates some home truths.
The narrative is least compelling when it tries to incorporate more depth into a 45 minute run than is possible, and then supplements this by referring to other popular media by analogy.
Ultimately, Salted Pretzels is a light-hearted and accessible rom com for the new generation that will leave you filled with hope for the future (and with a need to read Beartown).
Salted Pretzels is on now at The Blue Room Theatre through to October 21.