White China by Therese Collie
Go against the tide to find what is lost.
January 1974 and South-East Queensland is flooding…
As the Brisbane River breaks its banks, Daisy, a devout do-gooder sets out in a dinghy to find her mother Lily, who has disappeared from her nursing home. Jaz, a defiant hippie, and Daisy’s daughter, insists on accompanying her much to Daisy’s chagrin.
Far from lost, Lily has rediscovered her half sister Joy, who is desperate to uncover the resting place of their mother, Mary Wong. It is approaching Bi San, Ancestors’ Day, when Chinese traditionally worship the dead, but without knowing where her grave is, Joy is fearful that she will be cursed for shirking her duty. So, they begin their search by unpacking family lore and retracing historical steps.
Spanning the reaches of the Brisbane River, White China is an epic adventure that follows three generations of women as they rewrite their relationships in the wake of unacknowledged truths about their family history.
Wed 7 Jun – 17 Jun 2023
Wed 7 Jun – 8 Jun 2023
Fri 9 Jun 2023
Underground Theatre, Brisbane Powerhouse
90 minutes, no interval
Suitable for 15+
Contains low-level coarse language, adult themes including sexual references and mentions of abortion, and sexual assault.
Contemporary Theatre, Realism
Yuren (Cara) Shen
Deborah Faye Lee
Tracey Tainsh (aka Isheeni)
Therese Collie toured with the Popular Theatre Troupe before studying at the Lecoq School in Paris. A playwright, director, actor and dramaturge, in 2000, Therese was awarded an Australia Council Fellowship and The Playlab Award for her commitment to developing and presenting imaginative new work and fostering a sense of community in Queensland.
Other career highlights include: Director/Co-creator of the AWGIE award-winning Torres Strait Islander Children’s Play, Kese Solwata for KITE Theatre; Director of Svetlana in Slingbacks for La Boite Theatre; Writer/Director of Long Way Round for the ATOM award-winning SBS drama series Under The Skin; Director/Co-creator of Chinese Take Away, subsequently adapted as a doco-drama for SBS television, in which she acted.
Writing credits include: AWGIE nominated plays- Murri Time (KITE Theatre) and Goin’ to the Island (Kooemba Jdarra Indigenous Performing Arts) and published plays- Out of the Blue (Street Arts), Goin’ to the Island and Binni’s Backyard (KITE and Kooemba Jdarra).
In 2008 Therese formed Playabout Productions with Tim Mullooly, presenting a weekly walking tour, The Story of Brisbane at Brisbane Powerhouse from 2016-18. In 2013 Therese was Lead Artist (Brisbane) of Hubcap Productions’ Dust, a musical theatre show composed by and featuring Mark Seymour from Hunters & Collectors.
Therese was the Ensemble Director of of Anna Yen’s physical theatre work Slow Boat.
A Playlab Theatre Production. Playlab Theatre is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland.