Monday, April 22, 2024

Catherine Skipper



Once again, Griffin Theatre has brought experimental and absorbing theatre to its small stage in UFO.

Wudjang: Not the Past reclaiming the future

Directed and choreographed by Bangarra’s artistic director and national treasure, Stephen Page, and co-written by award-winning playwright, Alana Valentine, Wudjang: Not the Past promises to be a breath-taking theatrical experience.


Outlines is the inaugural season of video works displaying boundary-pushing artists and technologists who are reimagining the future of performance.

An Enchanted Evening

Riverside Theatres must be congratulated on having ensured that their audiences can stay connected and entertained during the Covid-19 lockdown through Riverside Theatre Digital. Now as theatres re-open, Riverside’s An Enchanted Evening eases the transition back to theatre-going by offering audiences the choice of seeing the show in-theatre or live-streamed into their homes.

A Room of One’s Own

While it was a joy to be back watching a live theatre performance, we might ask is there need for yet another stage adaptation of Virginia Woolf’s well-known and loved defence of women’s need for creative freedom. If audience reaction is an indication, then Carissa Licciardello and Tom Wright’s latest adaptation has been completely validated, not by a noisy standing ovation but by something much deeper, a few seconds pause, an intake of breath, the sound of thinking before the clapping begins.

Painting the suburbs

Hayley Megan French’s small (9 x 11 cm) painted-over Polaroid photographs mounted on Tasmanian oak are beautifully presented, placed at a comfortable eye-level in...

Bangarra stays connected

Bangarra Dance Theatre’s new work, SandSong, telling the stories of the land and the people of the Kimberley country, was set to tour Canberra, Brisbane, Melbourne and Bendigo in June to September this year but owing to Covid-19 the tour was postponed until 2021.

Gruesome Playground Injuries

Following the success of Lyle Kessel’s Orphans, Red Line Productions (Artistic Director, Andrew Henry), presented a live-streamed reading of Gruesome Playground Injuries by award-winning American playwright, Rajiv Joseph. The reading featured actors Rose Byrne (in New York), Ewan Leslie (in Sydney) with musical accompaniment by guitarist John Butler (in Perth) and stage directions by Anna Houston.

All the web’s a stage

What to do when theatres are locked down during the Covid-19 crisis? Theatre editor Catherine Skipper has got you covered.

ArtsLab: Behind Closed Doors

ArtsLab: Behind Closed Doors is the youth-led Shopfront Arts Co-op’s annual emerging artists’ festival, featuring a program of five works exploring the theme of personal and intimate experience.

The Campaign

The award-winning play The Campaign brings the courageous and determined struggle by Tasmania’s LGBTQI activists to repeal their state’s harsh and archaic anti-gay legislation to the mainland.

The Visitors

Acclaimed Murawari playwright, Jane Harrison, has re-imagined the arrival of the First Fleet in The Visitors – the latest game-changing production by Moogahlin Performing Arts.

Every Brilliant Thing

Belvoir St Theatre launched its 2020 season with one of its biggest successes of last year, the compassionate and heart-warming exploration of depression and suicide, Every Brilliant Thing. While the play does not avoid the anguish inherent in its subject, it affirms life by offering ways in which we can talk about suicide, and asking us to consider how we treat those impacted by a loved one’s suicide.

Knowledge Ground

Bangarra Dance Theatre is a precious and fragile national and international treasure. As this year marks the 30th year since its inception and foreshadows a generational change, the immersive installation Knowledge Ground: 30 years of sixty five thousand celebrates the launching of an archival platform which catalogues and curates Bangarra’s history online.

The Deadly Run

Sad, violent and true, The Deadly Run (Season 2: Deadhouse: Tales of Sydney Morgue) is an immersive theatre experience dramatising notorious cases which passed through the Sydney Morgue and Coroner’s Court in The Rocks.

Simple Souls

Making a return to magic realism, Paul Gilchrist sets his new short play Simple Souls in an abandoned night club, a venue reflecting the despondent mood of its central character, Marguerite (an impressive Madeleine Withington).

SheShakespeare’s R&J

Romeo and Juliet is SheShakespeare’s third all-female production, following upon an intense Macbeth (2018) and a sparkling As You Like It (2017).

I’m With Her

Described as “a piece of theatre that talks to the #MeToo movement … from real Australian women, whose experiences we could learn from and be inspired by”, I’m With Her fulfills its brief with compelling energy and conviction.

Mea Culpa

In her latest dance-theatre ensemble work director-choreographer Cloé Fournier explores the ways in which women have been constructed by a patriarchal society to adapt constantly to male demands.


Yve Blakes’s Fangirls celebrates the majority of teenage worshippers for whom their idols provide individual comfort in a “cruel and messy world” and through whom they connect with a community who share their personal interests.


Despite the mystification, John is totally and weirdly engrossing.

Free Fall

Free Fall is a moving and provocative work presented as part of the 3×3×2 Festival of New Works at the PACT Centre for Emerging Artists.

Natural Order

Natural Order has been timed to coincide with Homelessness Week. Moving, funny, subversive and haunting ...


Enthusiastically received by a delighted audience, the charming Once (music and lyrics by Glen Hansard, Marketa Irglova) is deceivingly simple but deeply touching.

30 years of 65 Thousand

It has always been a privilege to be invited into the world of the Bangarra Dance Theatre, and especially so as the company celebrates its 30th anniversary by paying homage to the work of those who have contributed through their passion and energy to its spectacular success.

The Happy Prince

In this evocative and playful queer reimagining of Oscar Wilde’s fairytale, the opposition between the coldness of the world and the warmth of emerging love is delicately maintained.

Made to Measure

Alana Valentine worked with designers, brides and health-based scientists to write Made to Measure, a play based on a large-bodied woman’s search for her dream wedding-dress.

No direction home

Interim, a work in progress shown at 107 Projects, Redfern on May 1, investigates residents’ personal connections to Waterloo and their feelings of uncertainty...

Winyanboga Yurringa

Winyanboga Yurringa, which translates from Yorta Yorta as “Women of the Sun”, is a moving, funny and beautiful play about Indigenous culture, community and women.

Curry Kings of Parramatta

Set in the very realistic kitchen of a Harris Park restaurant, Curry Kings of Parramatta gives its audiences a comical and often heart-wrenching insight into the lives of migrants from South East Asia.

Goodbye, but not the final curtain for the Genesian

The Genesian Theatre, a very well-loved, small, central-Sydney theatre, is to be ingested by a new 187-bedroom, 18-storey hotel and ground level retail and restaurant development that will be built beside it and cantilevered over it.

Frida Kahlo: Viva La Vida

Yet again the invaluable Théâtre Excentrique under the direction of Anna Jahjah has chosen to present a play both topical and spellbinding.

A Little Piece of Ash

A Little Piece of Ash beautifully acknowledges the physical and spiritual connection between mother and daughter.

Talking to Stephanie Somerville

Stephanie Somerville is rehearsing for her role as Jedda in A Little Piece of Ash, written and directed by Megan Wilding of Blackie Blackie Brown fame.

Ghenoa Gela – doing it her way

An interview with Ghenoa Gela whose one-woman show My Urrwai has toured Australia and soon will be opening at the Sydney Opera House.

Barbara and the Camp Dogs (2019)

The rock-fueled box office sensation Barbara and the Camp Dogs is back at the Belvoir.

Possum Magic

The brilliant Monkey Baa, award-winning company for young theatregoers, celebrated the launching of its brand-new production of the iconic Possum Magic on Saturday, March 30.

Exit the King

Exit the King, written in 1962, is often described as the most accessible of Ionesco’s plays, and is generally read as a lament for human mortality.

Theatre – The Dance of Death

The Dance of Death, translated by May-Brit Akerholt, is one of August Strindberg’s most produced plays, although at the time of its writing, 1900, a Swedish censor thought it too “disagreeable” to be performed.

Theatre – Minding Madness

Venue: Sydney Opera House Written By: Based on a book by Bruce Pascoe Directed By: Stephen Page There is still stigma and confusion around the topic of...

Theatre – TickTickBoom

A moving story of living with death and the importance of friendship, TickTickBoom won the Silver Gull Award from Sydney-based company subtlenuance in 2015.

Ear to the Edge of Time

In Ear to the Edge of Time Alana Valentine creates a mileau in the complex world of astrophysics, and deploys it to investigate the multi-layered nature of human endeavour.

Theatre – An Enemy of the People

Melissa Reeves’ “brand-new version” of Ibsen’s play, written in 1882, brings An Enemy of the People right into the moment.

Theatre – Potted Potter

First seen at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2006, Potted Potter: The Unauthorised Harry Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff has since toured internationally for a decade. This immensely popular show is back in Australia by magical demand having previously performed here in 2012 and 2014.

Theatre – Women in Australia: Stories of Courage

As part of Sydney Fringe 2018 Peach Productions presents a collection of eight new short plays written and directed by women of diverse backgrounds.

Le Dernier Appel

The dynamic Le Dernier Appel (The Last Cry) is set against the backdrop of New Caledonia’s forthcoming referendum, which will determine whether the one-time penal colony becomes independent of France.

Theatre – Macbeth

Macbeth is a very “blokey” play despite the infamous Lady Macbeth, and the title character is a stereotypical bloke for whom action is more natural than talking.

Theatre – Le Dernier Appel

The dynamic Le Dernier Appel (The Last Cry) is set against the backdrop of New Caledonia’s forthcoming referendum which will determine whether the one-time penal colony becomes independent of France. Holding approximately a quarter of the world’s nickel deposits, New Caledonia has a prosperous economy, however, the indigenous Kanaks are subject to economic exploitation and social discrimination.

Theatre – A Taste of Honey

Written by a 19 year-old Shelagh Delaney, set in working class Britain and first produced in 1958, how relevant is A Taste of Honey to a Sydney audience in 2018? Its central interests – were challenging in its time.

Theatre – The Diary of a Wombat

The Diary of a Wombat is about looking at things from a different point of view.