DARLINGHURST NIGHTS is a classic Australian musical which takes place on the streets around the Hayes Theatre itself, and the Hayes celebrates the show’s 30th anniversary with a new production from Helpmann Award-winning director Lee Lewis (The Bleeding Tree). Continue reading DARLINGHURST NIGHTS NOW ON AT THE HAYES
Production photography by Brett Boardman
“Never in my life has the right thing happened at the right time.”
Katherine Thomson’s iconic Australian play is revived by director Darren Yap at the Griffin Theatre Company for their 2017 season. Set in Wollongong, Diving for Pearls inspects the economic rationalism of the late ‘80s and the effect political decisions of the era had on opportunity and income for the working class, still impacting some today.
Ursula Yovich is brilliant as Barbara, a woman going through a rough patch who despite this, is eager to learn and immerse herself in the new job market while approaching 40. Steve Rodgers is the gentle Den, a steel work labourer adjusting to the new demands of the times. Together they compliment each other’s opposing personalities and form a wonderful (and at times comic) dynamic on stage. The range of passion Barbara and Den exude for one another reaches an ugly dramatic climax in Act 2, contrasting their affection during the first Act. Ebony Vagulans is another stand-out as Barbara’s intellectually disabled daughter Verge, who moves in to live with Barbara and Den, much to their surprise. Michelle Doake is the hilariously uptight Marj, sister of Barbara with an accent attempting to allude to higher status, particularly compared to the working class status of the other characters. Jack Finsterer is the serious Ron, Den’s brother-in-law and industrial consultant.
Griffin is well known for having a small stage, and the use of space was innovative. Set and costume designer James Browne had wonderful attention to detail, leaving no part of the stage unused. From small model houses lining the industrial pipes and dresser, to the grassy knoll that could then be flipped-up into the underground industrial areas of the town was a great transition from the natural to man-made modern world.
While having the ability to find humour in the often dark parts of the story, director Darren Yap reflects, “In the end, the hard thing this play says to me is: if you don’t change you will be changed.” Certainly Diving For Pearls is a comment on the ever-evolving world we live in, from the changing job market to the increasing over-reliance on technology. Our work is to adapt. Yapp believes we should “remember and cherish the past, but don’t live in it. We have to move forward. As I get older, I find that a harsh reality.” And perhaps this is the harsh reality of all the characters within Diving For Pearls. Life goes on for better or worse.
Diving For Pearls is on at Griffin Theatre Company from the 15th September – 28th October at 7pm Monday – Friday with additional 2pm shows on Saturdays and Tuesday 24th October.
All images by Ben Apfelbaum
Artistic Director Lee Lewis launched Season 2017 at a well attended industry function held on Monday night at the Cell Block Theatre within the National Art School in Darlinghurst.
Three new plays by Australian playwrights will have their premieres. Ross Mueller navigates the world of office politics in A Strategic Plan, Declan Greene takes farce to new extremes in The Homosexuals and Michele Lee explores the different relationships that migrants of different generations and backgrounds have with Australia in Rice.
The fourth Australian play will be a revival of one of the classics of the Australian theatre, Diving For Pearls, written by Katherine Thomson some twenty years ago with Darren Yap directing and Ursula Yovich in the lead role.
Griffin will also feature a number of independent productions around its main season. Legendary cabaret performer Robyn Archer will display her extraordinary talents bringing to life music from the classic cabaret repertoire.
Playwright David Williams will combine his talent for storytelling with his passion for football in Smurf in Wonderland which explores the worlds of sport and tribalism.
For more information about the season and to subscribe visit the Griffin Theatre online at http://www.griffintheatre.com.au or call 93613817.
“TIDES FLUSH EVERYTHING OUT. EVEN CRAZY CHICKS LIKE YOU”
In Sydney playwright Katherine Thomson’s KAYAK, all Ruth wants to do is be out on the harbour with her kayak and enjoy the quiet. She’s in Heaven. “I’m nestled in the meniscus, as secure as a duck.”
Just as Ruth gets lost in the serenity, her floating universe is destroyed by a perilous encounter with teenage hoons in a tinnie. Ruth seeks revenge and tracks down Luke Continue reading CROSS POLLINATE PRODUCTIONS PRESENTS KAYAK @ THE OLD FITZ