Last time Ben Caplan was here in 2014, he was accompanied by a band called the Casual Smokers — a motley crew who helped their frontman spark a gnarly jamboree of pluck-and-twang folk ballads. For Sydney Festival 2019, he and his beard are back. It looks like he's fired the band, kept their instruments and taken up acting. Old Stock is being billed as a refugee love story and, with a multitude of instruments strewn about the stage, there's no chance this is going to be a spoken word gig. Seizing upon the Jewish musical tradition of the klezmer folk tale, Caplan will set about rattling off the tale of two Romanian Jews looking to make a new home in Canada in the early 20th century. If you're desperate for a seat in the front row, some sort of face-protector wouldn't go astray — Old Stock's won a bunch of plaudits and when Caplan dances, Edinburgh Fringe Awards tend to fall out of his trousers.
Old Stock is part of Sydney Festival's dramatic and diverse 2019 program. Check out the full lineup here.
Image: Stoo Metz Photography.