Archive for December, 2010

‘Tis the season for Aquittals…


As offices empty and sunscreen sales soar – the festive summer season has arrived with a seemingly endless carousel of parties and social engagements. Now the theatre’s have closed – there are a few of the industry who have a list of 2011 projects lined up… and the rest of us face family Christmas lunch/dinner gently quizzed by family “so how is your drama stuff going?” and “have you thought about an apprenticeship?” and other such brutal questions asked by well-meaning members of your gene pool.

Normal folk – the ones with contented lives filled with relaxing weekends, 9-5 work hours, paid holidays, a structured career path and regular pay cheques – look forward to the end of the year as a time of snooze and booze and lavish materialistic rewards for their year of hard work. For theatre folk it’s a little different. Read more

True West | Sydney Theatre Company

STC True West Wayne Blair

Every now and then, I get a text message which changes my evening… “I have a spare ticket to STC’s True West Tonight, would you like to snaffle it up?” As a self-professed compulsive snaffler – I went, it’s always a beautiful experience to head out to the Wharf… lights off the water – and a mellow feeling of all being right with the world… I guess it’s the excellent company I keep, because often it isn’t the play’s message which is telling me that all is right with the world. And this is certainly true of True West. Read more

The Great American Trailer Park Musical | New Theatre


It has been on my “to see” list for a couple of weeks – and especially essential viewing as this production includes two of my previous colleagues (Shondelle Pratt, Assistant Director during BSN and Julian Ramundi from Stories from the 428) – and was highly recommended by one of my cast members this year. Read more

FYI: TOOLKIT Performance Lab 2011


In February 2011, Queen Street Studio will bring acclaimed New York-based artists Barney O’Hanlon (SITI Company) and Laura Sheedy (The PIT) to Sydney to present TOOLKIT Performance Lab 2011; a two week physical training intensive for performance based artists, theatre directors and dance makers. Read more

Where are the women? They’re AWOL and Online!


This time last year – a conversation started about the lack of women included in Australia’s mainstage seasons. Triggered by a shocking image at the launch of Company B’s 2010 season – a line up of men in black with one woman in a white shirt… the question was asked “Where are the Women?”

Blog posts, a Philip Parson’s lecture (presented as a panel) and some national and international press later – the conversation got bigger and louder and more complex resulting in an Action planning day for Women directors which was held in May 2010 at Belvoir. Members of the Australia Council’s Major Performing Arts Organisations came to hear the recommendations of women from all aspects of the industry – mediated by Anne Dunne. In August this year, the recommendations were finalised and submitted to the Australia Council. (I have included an excerpt compiled by Susanna Dowling below)

But what was missing in this discussion was the role of women playwrights in this discussion. Read more

A Distressing Scenario | BSharp & Post & Version 1.0


Part 1: bloody funny. Part 2: bloody tragic.

If reviews were condensed into 8 words and a scattering of semi colons (and written by someone else) that would sum up B-sharp’s A Distressing Scenario.

A double bill of two of Australia’s most fascinating performance makers – Post (a triumvirate of three women – recently finalist for the Philip Parson’s Award) and Version 1.0 (who recently presented The Bougainville Photoplay Project in the upstairs theatre.

Unlike many of the BSharp shows over the years, this double bill comprises of two new devised productions. Such work has previously been the realm and speciality of places such as Carriageworks and Performance Space, PACT and festivals such as Next Wave… and seen as alternative theatre in a landscape of predominantly text based theatre.

As a style, or genre, devised work is very challenging and demanding – of the devisors and of the audience. Much of the making of this style of work is based on trust, risk, daring, conversation, experiment, and a series of accidents, “what ifs” and the willingness to say something. There is no room to be coy, tardy or elusive – it just wont work. It is a slippery shifting style – that I must admit I am continually evolving my opinion and ideas about… When it works it is profound, surprising, terrifying and stimulating – when it doesn’t work it can be self-indulgent, tedious navel gazing posturing… but you don’t need to think about that. A Distressing Scenario works. Read more

Return top

Augusta Supple

Sydney-based theatre director, producer and writer. This site is about my long, deep, bright-eyed, ever-hopeful, sometimes difficult, always invigorating, rambunctious, rebellious, dynamic and very personal relationship with Australian Arts and Culture... I reflect on shows, talks, essays, writing, artists that inspire me to say something, and you'll find out what I'm working on, who I'm working with and what inspires me.