New Blood for the Castlemaine Theatre Company
17 June, 2012
The time has come to buy tickets for New Blood, The Castlemaine Theatre Company’s new directors season of short plays. We are thrilled to announce the coming season at the Phee Broadway Theatre, Mechanics Lane, Castlemaine, from June 22 – 1 July.
CTC is currently working on projects to engage wider participation in local community theatre – theatre of the people, for the people and by the people. To help that goal become a reality we put out a call for proposals to direct a short work to become part of a new directors season.
CTC was thrilled with the results and have had a wild ride with our 6 new directors – some are experienced but new to the CTC, some are first timers, all have and enduring passion for theatre. We are very excited to bring you an entirely new kind of production for the CTC: New Blood, six short works divided into two nights: Agency and Absolution. The works range from nineteenth century Romantic poetry to contemporary Australian works, and everything in between.
Some are darkly humorous, some wistful, some bright and breezy – all highly entertaining. We hope you enjoy the ride! Be warned – some works contain strong language and adult themes and are not suitable for children.
Agency is formed by a collection of plays that deal with individuals who are seeking to change the state of their existence – to have agency in their lives. Two of the plays take place in agencies. Hollywood Signs written by Alex Broun begins with a hilarious work in which two young advertising execs compete to bring their boss to a thundering climax and secure their place in advertising history.
This is followed by a piece by the same team that tells the sad and true story of Peg Entwhistle, a 1920s Hollywood starlet who sees no future for herself. While contemplating suicide she is visited by eighteenth century poet Thomas Chatterton. A touching and poignant dialogue ensues.
Next up is witty and thought-provoking Love or Nearest Offer by Hugh O’Brien. Bev, a single woman who has been successfully running an introduction agency for 23 years. She is thrown by the unexpected appearance of a new, not-so-silent partner, Reg, who challenges her on many levels.
This comedy explores their relationship and that of two younger clients with very high expectations. Finally the evening takes a darker turn with The Local Stigmatic by Heathcote Williams. Two rogues needle each other through rambling discussions on dog-racing, celebrity gossip, and taunts about girlfriends. This game of dare culminates in a night on the town and the stalking of a famous film actor, who they lure into the street.
The play is a brutal portrayal of seething conflicts and dark compulsions, lurking beneath a banal layer of incessant chatter.
The characters from the Absolution night seek to relieve or re-live their guilty secrets. The first work is Samuel T Coleridge’s classic epic, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. An old salty sea-dog recounts the terrible voyage in which he commits the sin of shooting an albatross – the sacred, protected bird of sailors.
This is followed by Good Grief by Frank Wilkie, a contemporary Australian comedy with a dark sub-text. The action takes place in a church-based counselling service where the counselling session reveals more than is bargained for.
The final work is black comedy, The Donahue Sisters by Geraldine Aron. Set in the attic of the family home in Ireland, once their playroom, three sisters, awaiting the death of their father, share insights into their far-from-perfect lives. As the clock strikes the time comes for a ritual re-enactment of a violent incident from their childhood. When the ritual is complete, things return to normal and the women seem to have found answers to their problems, which leaves the audience believing that the past might well repeat itself.
Who’s in NB?
Those who are old friends of the CTC, look out for our President Ken MacLeod in The Local Stigmatic, Secretary Kate Stones and Committee Member Kath Waugh in The Donahue Sisters, Committee Member Michael McMahon (Moliere in The Hypochondriac) in Hollywood Signs, Bairbre Williams and Morgan Kurrajong (Let’s Kill Agatha Christie) and Melissa Andrew (Angelique in The Hypochondriac) in Love or Nearest Offer, Tiffany Lane (Cleante in The Hypochondriac) in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, and Aston Elliot (Cat on a Hot Tin Roof) in The Local Stigmatic. Everyone else is new!
Show times and booking details:
Hollywood Signs by Alex Broun (Aus), dir. Phillip McDonald
Love or Nearest Offer by Hugh O’Brien (Aus), dir. Judi Appleby
The Local Stigmatic by Heathcote Williams (UK), dir. Stephen Mitchell
Fri June 22, 7.30pm
Sat June 23, 2pm
Sat June 30, 7.30pm
Sun July 1, 2pm
The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge (UK), directed by Daniel Keohan
Good Grief by Frank Wilkie (Aus), directed by Ron Moore
The Donahue Sisters by Geraldine Aron (Ire/Sth Africa), directed by Tricia O’Hara
Sat June 23, 7.30pm
Sun June 24, 2pm
Fri June 29, 7.30pm
Sat June 30, 2pm
BOOKINGS: Maine Shoes and Accessories, 174 Barker St, Castlemaine, ph: 5472 1136
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