Reviews

TESTIMONIALS

“Terrific instincts and great funny bones!” Ben Elton

“A very fine actor – and very, very silly!” Stuart Maunder, Victorian Opera

“Lyall Brooks makes acting look easy. His range of characters is enviable, his commitment is unwavering and he is effortlessly comedic.” Obie Scott Wade, Creator, SheZow

“Lyall brings intelligent choices, unswerving passion and superfluous talent to every project” Aaron Joyner, Magnormos

REVIEWS

Quote SuperGirly

“The incomparable Lyall Brooks is surely one of the best and most versatile of actors currently on the scene. It takes a great performer NOT to be swamped by McClatchy – and Lyall Brooks is that performer. His warmth (and genuine commitment to every role I’ve seen him play) makes the straight lines totally credible, and the pathos in the second act truly moving. You want him to win Supergirly. But over and above that he is hilariously funny and his dance to “Moves Like Jagger” left the audience with tears of laughter. He topped it with his Britney Spears impersonation. A great comic actor will win over stand-up every time… When you have two spectacular talents with great voices, a brilliant script, and arguably more laughs than the whole of this year’s comedy festival put together, you are bound to be packed to the rafters night after night… this is quite simply one of the funniest shows of the decade, if not the century. ” Coral Drouyn, Stage Whispers

“McClatchy and Brooks work flawlessly together, the chemistry from their previous shows sparking a strong sense of lust as well as friendship between them and the audience. Brooks is the chameleon of the piece, ducking off stage to change costume and swooping back on in a new character. His hot pink underpants make his twerking not only bearable, but downright sexy as he thrusts his Bradley Cooper caricature into life… A five-star performance that has to be seen to be believed.” Corina Thorose, Blurb Magazine

“Her partner in crime, Lyall Brooks (or Bradley Cooper in this case), displayed brilliant comedic timing and had an amazing ability to jump into a different celebrity persona upon SuperGirly’s request.” Brianna Doolan, Lip Mag

“I first saw Lulu McClatchy and Lyall Brooks on stage together last year in Neil LaBute’s play Fat Pig, and their chemistry back then was obvious. Now in SuperGirly they are given more freedom to experiment and play and the outcome is even better than I could have anticipated: McClatchy and Brooks nail it… Their energy does NOT wane at all and each song they perform is treated like it’s the first of the evening… Brooks is clearly having a ball with the characters, including Bradley, and creates some highly memorable moments in his impersonations and dance routines…” Myron My, Theatre Press

“Brooks, generally known for more dramatic roles, has a distinct flair for comedy. His sense of humour is a tad drier than SuperGirly’s but he gets many moments to almost steal the show. The two work with each other like a dream, and it’s lovely to see their chemistry on stage again. In a show such as this a certain wreckless abandon is required by the actors and though this is mostly a cabaret show, there never seems to be a dull moment between the two.” Antony Steadman, Theatre Nerd

“One wonders how Bradley Cooper, SuperGirly’s fabulous and equally talented side kick Lyall Brooks, puts up with her. But he does, and what ensues on stage is a brilliant chemistry between the two performers that underpins the success of this show.” Karla Dondio, Aussie Theatre

Quote Parricide

“Brooks is entirely believable as the tortured author (and is even successful in overcoming the fact that he is a little young to be an entirely accurate depiction of the author at forty-five!). His charisma is compelling.” Leonard Miller, Toorak Times

“A towering performance from Lyall Brooks, a great bear, caged in his agonizing mind… Lyall’s performance as Fyodor is monumental in the best way – at the same time frighteningly volcanic” Peter Green, 3MBS

Quote Fat Pig

“Brooks is a stunning actor, with the looks and charisma of a young Anthony Newley. He knows how to play comedy, with impeccable timing and pace. His energy, for the most part, was on the money and he was the only actor that you could hear every word from. In the first scene with McClatchy he made us love him, playing adorable to the hilt, and established our desire for this relationship to succeed.” Chris Baldock, Arts Hub

“A dashing Lyall Brooks…  and [Lulu] McClatchy deliver knock out performances that gets to the guts of both character’s weaknesses, even as they beguile the audience with the achingly obvious fact Tom and Helen are made for each other, both emanating effortless sex appeal… [The cast is] a rock solid quartet that hits every emotional beat, from snappy humour to distressingly conformist cruelty.” Stephen A Russell, The Lowdownunder

“Brooks is frustratingly perfect as Tom. I truly loathed his inefficacy and weakness as a character, which is a credit to Brooks’ performance. His positioning of an apparent ‘dilemma’, to me was just infuriatingly self-absorbed and Brooks certainly brought this to life.” Emily Jean, Same Same

“With the stunningly versatile and talented Lyall Brooks as Tom, and the mesmerising Patrick Harvey as Carter, his office mate, the laughs come thick and fast even while we’re squirming… Lyall Brooks has such a convincing presence in any role he plays, that it’s hard to look past him in any production. His Tom is warm, insecure, and ultimately shallow even though we want him (as he himself does) to be strong and heroic. He is never less that 100% convincing and impressive; real, fine, acting indeed… The two [Brooks and Harvey] together are like a fresh bowl of Rice Crispies: more snap, crackle and pop than most mere mortals can handle. Director Daniel Frederiksen makes a veritable banquet out of their time on stage together, and brings out two of the best performances in a comedy you will see this, or any other, year… This is a terrific production and well worth seeing. It really is an auspicious beginning for a fine independent theatre company, and I can’t wait to see Brooks and Harvey in their next outing.” Coral Drouyn, Stage Whispers

“Performances were excellent. I commend the actors and director… for executing this zeitgeist play with integrity. ★★★★★ “ Ash Cottrell, Theatre People 

Quote Savages

“In a tight ensemble performance, these actors shift their characters incrementally from relatively innocuous, often amusing pals, to a savage, snarling hunting pack… Brooks as George devolves from sensitive, lovelorn man to rabid dog, ruining our hope of any of the men resisting the drive to hunt and destroy. ★★★★ ” Kate Herbert, Herald Sun

“Cornelius’s finest play to date… a powerful piece of theatre at every level… The four actors create characters you can walk around… The fall of George (Lyall Brooks) is sudden but credible.” Chris Boyd, The Australian

“The performances are all strong… George (Lyall Brooks) chillingly plays out a fantasy of drowning the girl who has betrayed him… no one delivers less than a compelling portrait of fatally flawed masculinity at sea. Expertly handled.” Tim Byrne, Time Out

“The text drips with dark poetry which the four leads dance around with muscular charm and faultless timing… Whether boisterously working out, boxing, racing or dancing, somehow all four manage to overcome breathlessness to deliver each line pitch perfect in what is surely an arduous task… All four leads excel, with particular mention for the masterful ambiguity in Brooks’ George… Disturbing, yet utterly compelling, viewing.” Stephen A Russell, The Lowdownunder

The piece is very physical with much running, dancing, jumping and climbing all over this enormous piece of set. The actors build up a sweat, the action on stage is visceral and relentless… The performances of all four actors were thrilling… The actors cleverly altered the mood within each scene. ★★★★” Ian Nott, Theatre People

“These four actors built this play phenomenally. As they increased their intensity and pack-like masculinity, I felt myself actually getting smaller. The simple set had them always dragging themselves up the inclining stage, or propelling towards us. [Director] Susie Dee choreographed these men into what was essentially a 90 minute dance, dripping with barely restrained masculinity and misogyny.” Jess Sykes, Onya magazine

“There is a strong sense of ensemble and all actors excel in their roles working with courageous commitment to the text, that moves smoothly from the heightened poetic to simple naturalism.” Suzanne Sandow, Stage Whispers

Quote SITPWG

“Lyall Brooks, who’s… a bit player, it’s fair to say… He’s done lots of roles in theatre, musical theatre… He’s a brilliant actor. He’s one of those guys that takes any part and just chews it up and is just incredible… I want to see him and Nancye Hayes in a two-hander… I’ve seen Lyall do a lot of comedy stuff, and he’s always hilarious… His comic timing is outrageously good. But then he also played [Dennis] in the second act… he did that incredibly sensitively. He was beautiful; was really moving in that part in Act II, as well as incredibly funny in Act I.” Stage Door Podcast

“I doubled the role of Mr with the actor who plays Franz; no reason for that at all except that he’s a very fine actor – and very, very silly! And he gets to play Dennis in Act II as well, who’s one of the most heartfelt characters in the piece.” Stuart Maunder, Director
“The response from the audience at that point [the Mr and Mrs scene] is so wonderful – and needed! The scene is so hilarious, it inevitably leads to applause from the house.” Al Lewis, George

“Much of the brilliance is drawn out through the interpretations of the wonderful actors… in particular… Lyall Brooks boasts fabulous characterization.” City On Fire

“The chorus is exhilarating.” Kate Herbert, Herald Sun

“Breathtaking… There isn’t a weak link.” Peter Burch, The Australian

Quote Penelope

“Lyall Brooks as Quinn is the perfect Alpha male, a bully who can’t stand not having his own way. He threatens, he uses stand-over tactics, he even drives competitors to suicide. He’s as nasty as they come and will do anything to serve his needs. Brooks nails it on every level, and when the play has him resort to burlesque… dressing up for a pantomime performance which has us muttering “WTF?”… he’s also very funny. It’s not surprising….Brooks is an astonishingly versatile actor who seems able to do everything from animation voice-overs to Sondheim with the Victorian Opera. He impresses in everything he does, and Penelope is no exception.” Coral Drouyn, Stage Whispers
“The play gives huge scope for the actors, who are all adept at comedy and drama and switching between the two. As the bully, Quinn, Lyall Brooks fills the stage with his posturing and self-assurance, shifting in an instant to threats and violence. Apart from his explosive rages, his delivery of the lines is remarkably nuanced… Much of what passes for contemporary theatre pales in comparison.” Carol Middleton, Australian Stage Online

“Quinn (Lyall Brooks) plays the role of the bully, creating tension emotionally and physically, which progresses the story along nicely… a must-see.” Josie McGraw, Milk BarMagazine

Quote House

“Father (played by Lyall Brooks with an effortless smugness) is the head of his house, and does most of the talking… [There’s] a memorable stylised fight that showed how Father’s self-satisfaction, supercilious nature and disinterest in adapting to change contributed to his defeat. I recommend this performance as it’s sure to cause stimulating post-theatre discussions on the way back to your own house.” Jason Whyte, Aussie Theatre

“One of the highlights of the Fringe. Maxwell’s characters… convey a real sense of psychological intensity, only without the usual shouting or spitting over the audience. His non-realistic portraits are also very funny, something brought out especially well by Lyall Brooks as the father… An exciting exhibition of performance. ★★★★” Andrew Furhmann, Time Out

Quote Pride

“Lyall Brooks is stunning as a starchy character who fears losing control over his feelings… As always with Red Stitch, acting dominates… the role of present-day Phillip, who could have been portrayed as a hapless victim in less capable hands, retains a semblance of dignity in the face of his lover’s repeated rejection and exploitation.” Tim Roberts, The Ember
“The time shifts happen seamlessly as the action darts back and forward, with the extraordinary actors turning on a dime to change clothes, personalities and accents…sharp, joyous, dark, complex and wonderful and Red Stitch at its best. ★★★★½” Kate Rose, Sunday Herald Sun
“Brooks has impeccable comic timing and delivery and also a firm grasp on the dramatic, playing both the closeted, conservative 1950s Phillip and his modern, warm and loving counterpart. ★★★½”  Kate Herbert, Herald Sun
“Brooks gives a terrifically brave and nuanced performance as the repressed Phillip… The real heart of this play is the relationship between Phillip and Oliver.” Sara Bannister, Stage Whispers
“The acting captures period style and mannerism, drawing brittle humour and anxious nuance…comic flair and dramatic concentration. Frankly, if the MTC routinely produced acting of this caliber, we’d be laughing.” – Cameron Woodhead, Sydney Morning Herald
“It has always been a standard of Red Stitch to choose and produce work that accentuates the actor… This cast all perform marvelously, capturing the periods, the nuances, the humour and even the tragedy of these characters.” Vito Mattarelli, Australian Stage

Quote Heretic

“Security guard Geoff Tordoff (Lyall Brooks) was the standout performer, displaying a startling subtle comedic presence.” Heather Bloom, Australian Stage Online

“Lyall Brooks is a real stage presence who taps all facets of Tordoff’s (an ex-marine greenie) off-kilter character.” Coral Drouyn, Stage Whispers

“I found (Lyall Brooks’) Geoff Tordoff the most entertaining and frustrating character of the play. Entertaining because Brooks is clearly gifted with comic timing and stage presence – his entrance at the beginning of the second act is a lesson in the subtleties of good characterization – but frustrating because you don’t see enough of him.” Theatre Virgin

Quote UDS

“I was hoping that the four performers would be equally matched. However, as assured as the others are, Mr Brooks basically stole the performance honours for me. Part Anthony Newley, part Rik Mayall, he can take a clever line and make it excruciatingly funny. This didn’t take away from the delights of the other actors. It just meant that even when he wasn’t the focus, I would still be checking out what he was up to. ★★★★★” Chris Baldock, Theatre People

“Brooks is hilarious… A rollicking and raucous highlight. ★★★½ ” – Kate Herbert, Herald Sun (Urban Display Suite)
“Performances are strong; Lyall Brooks… in particular show[s] great comic timing… with an officiousness reminiscent of David Brent. ★★★★” Sarah Braybrooke, Arts Hub
Lyall Brooks shows his professionalism throughout, and steals the show with “One Day” Coral Drouyn, Stage Whispers
“Lyall Brooks [is] outstanding in [his] ability to seamlessly transition into wildly varying characters.” Jessica Barlow, Onya Magazine
“Executed with big energy by Lyall Brooks” Elly Varreniti, The Age

Quote TTAM

“Lyall Brooks… plays a variety of walk-on parts that punctuate the central action and are a definite highlight of the show.” David Croft, Theatre Online

“The comedy is given a huge boost by the presence of Lyall Brooks… who play[s] a dazzling range of supporting roles. To say that [he] nailed the comedy on each and every character is an understatement.” Simon Parris, Theatre People