Here and over there ~ theatre notes

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Here and over there

Some titbits from the TN mailbox that might interest theatrenauts:

* The Australian Script Centre is turning 30, and to celebrate its birthday is conducting a national poll, in association with ABC Radio National, to discover Australia's favourite play. Join the conversation online at the Centre's site here.

* Patricia Cornelius's play Love, which premiered at the Malthouse way back in - 2004, was it? - is presently on in New York under the auspices of the Production Company's Australia Project, directed by blogger Mark Armstrong. Matt Freeman reckons it's fab.

* Independent Adelaide company Floogle opens Duncan Graham's Ollie and the Minotaur at Belvoir St Downstairs next month. Check it out; it was one of my favourite shows in Melbourne last year.

* Back to Back's brilliant show Food Court, one of my highlights from last year's MIAF, is finally coming to Sydney in June. It was dropped from the Sydney Festival program just before its first season, but Brian Eno has picked it up for his Luminous Festival at the Sydney Opera House, where it will travel after an appearance in Brussels.

* Our Geoffrey, lest we forget, is opening on Broadway this week in Exit the King, which as you all recall is a Malthouse/Belvoir St production directed by Neil Armfield. Only over on the other side of the Pacific, Rush is leading an American cast featuring Susan Sarandon.

* Over in the UK, London Bubble - a charming company whom I saw doing a fabulous adaptation of Ovid's Metamorphoses one magical night in a London park - has come up with a smart idea to make up for funding cuts: invite their fans to invest in them. You can buy a stake for 20 pounds, which means you can offer ideas, be in on rehearsals and in general be part of the Bubble community. Check it out here.

* And finally: Simon Phillips' Priscilla Queen of the Desert: The Musical opens in London to standing ovations - and general canning from the British crrrritics. But it seems that where the West End counts - in the box office - it's hitting the spot. Even that dyspeptic duo, the West End Whingers, gave it a rave recommendation.


Russell said...

Hi Alison,
Followed your link to "The Production Company" doing Love in the US, as I was involved in the original production, happen to be in the US currently and was interested in seeing another interpretation of the play. I was alarmed to discover that many of the publicity images used to advertise the new production seemed portray a visually identical re-staging of the HotHouse/Malthouse production from 2004. I feel a little dirty now. Any thoughts? I'd be happy to email you a few of the uncannily similar photos for your perusal.

Alison Croggon said...

Hi Russell - sadly I wasn't here for the first production, so the pictures tell me nothing. But even so, it strikes me as hard to tell - eg, any production of Endgame will have the windows at each end of the stage, a ladder, etc etc... I understand your disquiet, but in any case, even if this production were a straight copy, it would be hard to know what one could (or should) do about it.

Unknown said...

Alison: thanks for your mention!

Russell: I can ensure you that I haven't seen any previous productions of Love onstage or recorded and my work on the play is my own. But don't take my word for it -- feel free to ask Patricia's agent Jean Mostyn who attended the opening night or Patricia herself when she joins us for the final week through the generous support of PlaywritingAustralia. Your suspicion here is unwarranted, paranoid and ungenerous.

Anonymous said...

Take that, Russell!

Russell said...

Hi Alison,
Mark has pointed out that no one involved in their production has seen any prior productions or images of "Love", and it seems that images portrayed on their website are their own construction. Great to see Australian work on stage in America!

Unknown said...


It was nice to speak with you on the phone today and I appreciate you retracting your above comment. As we discovered on our call, the image you felt was similar was indeed so -- it was a moment described very specifically in the play's stage directions. (I'd say that the image was the playwright's construction, actually, and quite a striking one.)

Sorry you won't get to see the production, but many thanks for clearing this up!


Anonymous said...

Oh, the Bubble Theatre! My very first experience of adult theatre was watching them do Twelfth Night in a tent in my local park when I was pretty young, and being astonished that Shakespeare was so hysterically funny. And I also saw that daffy, inventive, utterly charming Metamorphoses - thanks so much for pointing me to their resourceful new scheme.

Alison Croggon said...

Was it on a magical summer night with a gigantic crescent moon, David? Nice to think we might have crossed paths...

Anonymous said...

It was, it was... but more to the point, was it Waterlow Park? In which case, uncanny Ovidian connections (magic moon supplied as standard) have been achieved...