Interplay | Sydney Dance Company


It is rare that I’ll venture from the word-heavy comfort of my true love (text-based theatre) and meander into the muscular flesh-fest of contemporary dance… but I do from time to time. This special occasion is a triptych presented by Sydney Dance Company in their 45th Anniversary Year – two new works and a remounted work from yesteryear.

Not practiced in the language of (nor the world of) dance, I feel fairly limited in my ability to articulate the specific thoughts and experience of watching phrase upon phrase of movement. I watch trying to form a sense of how to articulate a moment or an image – and so watching becomes in part an exercise in writerly craft -a previous example of trying to write about dance (Specifically a SDC show) can be found here: . To build my dance articulation muscle I’ll continue to exercise because I am not yet sophisticated in my viewing, nor in my language in responding or reviewing dance.

Lucky the Sydney Dance Company is so robust in it’s history and vision, that the likes of a reader and writer like myself could not possibly dint their reputation as I fumble about in the top drawer of my language skills to find something coherent to say. It’s taken me too long to pluck the courage up to say something… but now at least I have.
Just in time for the show to move on from Sydney to a bright horizon. Read more

Playwriting Festival 2014 | NSW Writers Centre

Photo on 28-03-14 at 6.56 PM #2

To me there is nothing more exciting than the convergence of a range of different minds and hearts and voices coming together to collide, clash, reinforce, reveal, support or offer a completely new perspective, a personal perspective. When this convergence is around of and for playwrights, their plight and their inspiration, their resilience, adaptability and experience – well – it’s the perfect way to spend a Saturday. Read more

Fight Night | Sydney Theatre Company and The Border Project and Ontroerend Goed


I have no doubt: the personal is political. But who are these “persons” making things of their own politics, and politics of their own person? If we are to examine closely: the politics of me, you, us – would any of us be able to guess how any of our personal politics could steer 90 minutes of entertainment? Read more

A confession… and a want… and a plea…


Forgive me, for I’ve been absent. It’s been a month or so since my last blog post – and anyone who has a blog knows that when it all starts backing up it feels horrible: a black, sticky stench of a feeling, weighing and nagging like an unsatisfied heart.

January was the usual carousel of festive delights, jostling and competing for my attention like a throng of over-sugared five-year-olds ready for birthday cake. Sydney Festival is a wonderful time of year, when I feel like I have permission to be the pale-skinned indoor-dwelling person that I am, in a country that is really best suited to the bikini-ed tent pitch-ers. Read more

Vale James Waites: Lover of and fighter for the underdog, the glamour puss and all the quirky ratbags


James Waites 06.03.1955 – 12.02.2014

Today was a difficult day. The usual morning practicalities and logistics changed with a text message from my mentor and friend, and a voicemail message from a concerned stranger.

James Waites has passed away. Read more

The Shadow King | Malthouse Theatre & Sydney Festival


I really can’t think of anything I’d rather not do, besides sit in the dark for many many many hours whilst listening to yet another Shakespearean play get a good “going over” by a company primarily focused on the design in order to create a heavy “universality” statement about the human condition. Thank goodness The Shadow King IS NOT THAT! Read more

Ockham’s Razor | Sydney Festival & Seymour Centre


There is something very satisfying or attractive about the notion of simplicity. Ockham’s Razor is a theory which privileges simplicity with the notion that “among competing hypotheses, the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be selected.” Read more

Forklift | KAGE & Sydney Festival


Sometimes when I’m responding to a work – or if I’m reviewing, I trawl through responses by others to see how they articulated their experience. I always learn something from writers and from writing. In this instance at the Saturday show I was sitting next to my blog-sister Jane Howard who wrote a review for the Guardian (AUS) which you can read HERE. I must say I think Jane’s background in dance keeps her critical pencil well sharpened.

Interestingly – the review I raised both my eyebrows at was by Martin Portus for Stage Whispers. Which you can read HERE. Interesting he should engage with this show from a gendered point of view. Going back to my review, long after the fact, I realised the stark difference my review doesn’t mention or indicate the gender of performers at all.

I didn’t purposely not mention they are female performers.

I wonder in the world of acrobatics, dance, circus if being a woman performer IS to be noted. I wonder if it was poor form of me not to mention they are women? I do wonder if it mattered. To the story. Or to the physicality of the piece – or to the dramaturgy of the show. I suspect it doesn’t. After all I don’t say “Look at the excellent job that female actor playing the part of a parent” in my reviews and responses… I don’t note the tone or pitch of someone’s voice with gendered consideration. Should I?

Interesting what we notice, what we privilege, what we consider worth noticing and recording, isn’t it? Read more

On the Shore of the Wide World | Pantsguys and Griffin Independent


Swathes of heavy cloth, canvas, or calico – the thick sails of a ship or the drop sheets in a house mid-renovation. Scuffed grey floor. Some chairs. Functional, nearly sculptural. A neutral zone for the scenes to smear and blend, I’ll know where I am because I’ll be shown or told through light or line or a hum of sound. Read more

Oedipus Schmoedipus | Belvoir & Post


A response by Augusta Supple after Aristotle, Benedict Andrews, Elissa Blake, Jason Blake, Lloyd Bradford Syke, Wesley Enoch, John McCallum, Ralph Myers, PACT, The Performance Space, Martin Del Amo, Julie-Anne Long, Chris Ryan, The Sydney Front, Cristabel Sved, Natalie Rose, Mish Gregor, Zoe Coombs Marr, Post, Sydney Theatre Company, Wesley Enoch, Diana Simmonds, James Waites.*

Unless you have been asleep (or dead, or not attending shows at Belvoir) for the past five years, you’d noticed a scholarly obsession with the ancient Greek classics – you know the ones – of gore and punishment, foretold prophecies lived and the horror of one’s true nature being one’s undoing. Read more

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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.