PLAYLAB'S NSW SYLLABUS SUGGESTIONS 2019-20

TOPIC 3: THE VOICE OF WOMEN IN THEATRE

The following list has been assembled by Playlab in order to provide an extended list of plays suitable for study in Topic 3: The Voice of Women in Theatre. We have complied the following list of plays written by some of the most influential and prolific female voices in Australian theatre. Each of the plays below is an example of the way women in Australian theatre create, develop and assert their voice. This list has also be curated to focus on work that interrogates issues affecting women’s equality, status and identities and the maintaining or breaking of stereotypes and socio/cultural judgements made about women and provide access to work from different dramatic forms, techniques, performance styles and conventions.

New additions to the curriculum suggestions: HEDDA A REIMAGINING OF HENRIK IBSEN’S HEDDA GABLER by Melissa Bubnic |LYSA AND THE FREEBORN DAMES by Claire Christian | MEDEA by Suzie Miller | THE BELONGING TRILOGY by Margi Brown Ash HERE WE ALL ARE. ASSEMBLED. by Kathryn Ash

**Upcoming publications to be released: HORIZON by Maxine Mellor | MAGPIE by Elise Greig


A Re-imagining of Henrik Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler

by Melissa Bubnic

THEMES: Love, Passion and Revenge
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
CAST SIZE: 7 – 8 Cast Members
TARGET AUDIENCE: Senior Years

Hedda Gabler is railing against her life. She didn’t marry bogan drug slinger George Tesman so she could play housewife in a monstrous Gold Coast mansion ... Read more

Lysa and the Freeborn Dames

by Claire Christian

THEMES: Feminism, Politics, Activism
Length: 1.5 Hours
TARGET AUDIENCE: Adult

Lysa King is nineteen and angry. After spending a year away from her small town, experiencing a powerful uprising of her own political voice, and the protests of women all ... Read more

Medea

by Suzie Miller

THEMES: Love, Passion and Revenge
LENGTH: 2 Hours
TARGET AUDIENCE: Adult

When Medea fell for Jason, she fell hard. Hard enough to sacrifice everything to be with him. She deceived her father, committed murder, left the comforts of her homeland and ... Read more

The Belonging Trilogy

by Margi Brown Ash

THEMES: Belonging, Home, Not-Belonging,
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
CAST SIZE: 1–2
CHARACTER AGES:
≤50
TARGET AUDIENCE: 
Adults

Alongside the three plays, social artist, Margi Brown Ashshares her devising processes and provides key learnings for readers to reflect on and explore their own personal and cultural mythology, collaborative ... Read more

Here We All Are. Assembled

by Kathryn Ash

THEMES: Friendship, Love, Existential Crises
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
TARGET AUDIENCE: Senior Years

A twisted tale of two hapless characters who dare to question. Suspended in a rotting dystopian landscape, forgotten by the world, these two are comforted by blissful ignorance, turning a ... Read more

Bukal

by Andrea James with Henrietta Marrie

THEMES: Contemporary Indigenous Theatre
LENGTH: 1 Hour
CAST SIZE: 3 – 4 Cast Members
TARGET AUDIENCE: Senior Years

From the rainforest to the world arena, Bukal is a story of an amazing woman. From the heart of Cairns Yidinji people comes the inspiring story of a courageous woman ... Read more

The Dead Devils of Cockle Creek

by Kathryn Marquet

THEMES: Environmentalism, Ideology, Compromise
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
CAST SIZE: 3 – 4 Cast Members
TARGET AUDIENCE: Adult

Working out of a small shack in the isolated wilds of south-western Tasmania, George, an environmental scientist, is trying to save the world one Tassie Devil at a time. Since ... Read more

Still Point Turning: The Catherine McGregor Story

by Priscilla Jackman

THEMES: LGBTQIA, Identity and Love
LENGTH: 2 Hours
TARGET AUDIENCE: Adult

From the age of eight, Catherine McGregor knew she was a woman. But first she would have to live as a man. She played many parts: son, brother, husband, athlete, ... Read more

Rice

by Michele Lee

THEMES: Globalisation, Power, Politics and Migration
CHARACTER AGES: Adult
LENGTH:1.5 Hours
CAST SIZE: 1 – 2 Cast Members
TARGET AUDIENCE: Adult

Everyone has problems to deal with – in the boardroom or the basement, global or local, business or personal. Two multicultural women making their way in modern Australia forge a powerful, ... Read more

Kryptonite

by Sue Smith

THEMES: Multiculturalism, Politics, Love, National Identity
CHARACTER AGES: 23 – 48
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
CAST SIZE: 1 – 2 Cast Members
TARGET AUDIENCE: Adult

It has been 25 years since the tanks rolled into Tiananmen Square. A generation later, have the scars healed or have they been papered over with bank notes? Through the lens ... Read more

Head Full of Love

by Alana Valentine

THEMES: Indigenous Health, Love, Cultural Divisions
CHARACTER AGES: 50+
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
CAST SIZE: 1 – 2 Cast Members

The Annual Alice Springs Beanie Festival is fast approaching and Tilly Napuljari is out of time to finish her new creation to enter it for judging. Nessa Tavistock, a Sydneysider, ... Read more

Chinese Take Away

by Anna Yen

LANGUAGE: English and Cantonese
THEMES:
History, Family, Poverty, Chinese Culture, Traditionalism
CHARACTER AGES: 30
LENGTH: 45 Minutes
CAST SIZE: 1 – 2 Cast Members
TARGET AUDIENCE: Senior Years

Three generations of women; Grandmother, Mother and Anna, make a figurative ‘journey’ from the mores of Old China to those of contemporary Australia. A tragi-comic, one-woman show richly realised through ... Read more

Blue Bones

by Merlynn Tong

LANGUAGE: English, Mandarin, Malay and Hokkien
THEMES:
Domestic Violence, Relationships, Self Empowerment
CHARACTER AGES: Young Adult
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
CAST SIZE: 1 – 2 Cast Members
TARGET AUDIENCE: Senior Years

When a woman finds scars left by her ex-boyfriend of many years etched into her bones, she begins a turbulent journey to unpack her past and discover how he got ... Read more

Composing Venus

by Elaine Acworth

NEW VINTAGE NEW RELEASE
THEMES: History, Family
LENGTH: 2 Hours
CAST SIZE: 8 Cast Members / 13-14 Cast Members without doubling
TARGET AUDIENCE: Senior Years

Spanning three decades, in flights of fantasy, poetic phrasing and sombre soliloquy, Composing Venus tells the story of three generations of women living in outback North Queensland. Read more

The Dark Room

by Angela Betzien

THEMES: Violence, Sex, Police, Isolation
CHARACTER AGES: 14 – 40
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
CAST SIZE: 5 – 6 Cast Members
TARGET AUDIENCE: Adult

A lonely motel somewhere in the Northern Territory. Deep into the night, six lost souls play out a small, distant tragedy of lovesickness and social breakdown – only it’s not ... Read more

Had We But World Enough

by Oriel Gray

THEMES: Love, Racial Injustice and Rural Australia
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
New Vintage
CAST SIZE: 9 + Cast Members

It’s the Wednesday before Easter, and the stage is set for what will surely be the most discussed Easter Nativity play in the history of Seaton, a rural town ... Read more

Hanako

by Katherine Lyall-Watson and Caroline Dunphy

THEMES: Culture Clash, Art, Dominance and Female Empowerment
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
TARGET AUDIENCE: Senior Years
CAST SIZE: 7 – 8 Cast Members

Hanako plunges the audience into the hyper-realistic fantasy of ... Read more