PROJECT BESTFRIENDSHIP is a meta-theatre exploration of what it’s like not to have a grant. The brainchild and nurtured silliness of three indie theatre stalwarts, Ang Collins, Charles O’Grady and Eliza Oliver, the production sprang from a meeting of theatrical minds and has found itself, rather bewildered and blinking, on the stage at The Joan. Determinedly allusive, it is winning and whimsical and strikes a perfect whinge and whine balance.
BLUEBERRY PLAY is a short run, late night offering at the Old Fitz Theatre and well worth the effort it might take to get there at 10pm or the special time of 7pm on Sunday. It offers a sweet story crafted with a lovely sense of fun by playwright Ang Collins, directed with a similar odd amusement by Sheridan Harbridge and performed with wide eyed comic excellence by solo performer Julia Robertson.
But there’s more going on in this second person, direct to audience, relation of events in an adolescent life than just the humour that’s squeezed into its compact 60 minutes… it’s bursting with the tartness of themes around child carers, adolescent sex, mental health, the power of female friendships in adversity and the inequities of class.
The girl is on her way to a party. There’s a private school boy she likes and she is dressed as a blueberry for the occasion. Her logic is sound about this choice and she seems confident in her shy and slightly cynical way. She’s got a bit else on her mind beside the nicely proportioned Johnno though. Dad isn’t well on a whole heap of fronts, Dave the old, fat Lab is coming to the end, Mum is harassed and coming to the end of her empathy tether. Add in a chili sauce issue and there’s a tussle going on inside the rotund velveteen fruit. Continue reading BLUEBERRY PLAY: SWEET, TART ENJOYMENT→
BLUEBERRY, by emerging playwright Ang Collins, is playing as part of the BATCH FESTIVAL at Griffin Theatre Company and it is such a healthy treat of show. Sweet, compact, neatly packaged and with the tartness of unspoken sadness when you burst the skin. Played with stellar technique and compassion and directed with style, BLUEBERRY is a moorish delicacy. Continue reading BLUEBERRY: A NOURISHING TREAT AT THE BATCH FESTIVAL→
Featured photo – Griffin Award 2017 winner David Finnigan. Photo by Javier Vela. Inset photos by Brett Boardman.
In promoting and encouraging new, emerging Australian playwrights, the Griffin Theatre Company is continuing to evolve and grow.
Under the Artistic Direction of Lee Lewis, Griffin has become an audience favourite, as evidenced last Sunday by a full house of writers, fellow actors and loyal supporters at the annual 2017 Griffin Award.
The Griffin Award is now in its twentieth year and recognises an ‘outstanding play or performance text that displays an authentic, inventive and contemporary Australian voice.’
The winner received a $10,000 prize and the runners-up $1,000. Of the 95 entries this year, only 5 were shortlisted.
The winner was David Finnigan for Kill Climate Deniers, a sharp and satirical look at politics, the two-party system coming face to face with a global-scale crisis unfolding over decades.
The other 4 shortlisted plays this year were: Kit Brookman for The Bees Are All Dead, Ang Collins for Blueberry Play, Emme Hoy for Extinction of the Learned Response and Brooke Robinson for Good Cook. Friendly.Clean.
The play readings were stimulating, clever and funny and all refreshingly different. It would be good to see these plays, in their entirety, on stage some time soon.
If you are a playwright and wish to be notified when applications for 2018 open, go to the Griffin website, Griffin Award, and fill out a form. For other queries, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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