A 3,000-kilometre regional tour will follow a fresh Sydney season of the one-act thriller The Silver Tunnel this January – presented by hero of the homeless, the Rev. Bill Crews.
The darkly comic play previously featured at Ashfield Uniting Church in late 2020 when Crews turned his inner-west Sydney church into a theatre under strict Covid-controlled conditions.
Starring Ric Herbert and Tim Matthews, the play returns to Ashfield in late January before touring from February to April 2022 – where it will be performed free in churches, just like its original version – right across NSW.
Set in a graveyard, it confronts suicide by celebrating life – with lots of laughs along the way.
The suicides are all from the time of the First Fleet, and Old Harry has been the “keeper” of their graves in Sydney’s oldest graveyard for 34 years. But what will happen when Jason, a suicidal, apprentice gravedigger arrives, because the voices of the deceased have called him in?
The return season of The Silver Tunnel at Ashfield Uniting Church runs from Tuesday January 25 to Saturday January 29. The play will then tour 11 NSW suburban and regional centres, starting with Manly Uniting Church on Friday February 4 and Saturday February 5. Liverpool, Windsor, Katoomba, Wollongong, Berry, St Georges Basin, Adamstown, Bathurst, Parkes and Dubbo.
With its inspiring message of ‘choosing life’ The Silver Tunnel is an entertaining, travelling billboard for the work of the Rev. Bill Crews Foundation. The production tours in its own branded van and features the same top cast as in 2020: high profile singer/actor Ric Herbert (Jesus Christ Superstar, The Rocky Horror Show, The Full Monty, Equus, A Hard God, Underbelly, Wild Side and Sweet and Sour) and talented newcomer Tim Matthews (Studio 3, Disney Channel). Fun fact: Writer-director of The Silver Tunnel, Warwick Moss, performed in the play’s original 1987 production in a Manly disco!
Mr Crews says it’s “time for a bit of hope and entertainment” given the rollercoaster of the last two years – and what could be better than a play set in a graveyard performed in a church?
“The church becomes part of the set! Like all our endeavours, this inspiring touring production is primarily aimed at raising awareness and funds for the poor and disadvantaged people we protect – as well as to introduce our services to new areas.
“At the 2020 premiere season, our homeless, often struggling, guests sat side by side with ‘normal’ theatre goers.
“They all loved it and got the same message … the wonder and value of life.”