Best on Stage
These five productions span the spectrum of theatrical performance. Your 2019 Best On Stage nominees have had to get good at finding their way off stage through a thicket of thrown roses and deafening ovations. It was hell narrowing it down to only five, now it’s over to you.
Beyond The Walls Dance Showcase
Beyond The Walls Dance Showcase is an uplifting, energetic and inspiring program of original dance works choreographed by young people incarcerated in Youth Justice Centres. Five professional dancers embodied the voices of these young people in heartfelt depictions of their past and their hopes for the future. Beyond the Walls provided a crucial space for young people incarcerated and gave them a platform with which to amplify their own voices in the ongoing dialogue around youth justice.
Photo courtesy of Beyond The Walls
RECLAIM: Black Birds x You Therefore Me
Presented by PACT Centre for Emerging Artists, Black Birds and You Therefore Me, RECLAIM challenged the conventional idea of femininity and celebrated the diversity and strength of feminine identity. The performance aimed to connect and empower womxn through movement, music and art. With a lineup of movement pieces to music by some of the world’s baddest womxn including live music by Mirrah, VJing by Lunar Sequence, photography by Christina Appel and a DJ set by munaaasib.
Photo: Christina Appel
plenty serious TALK TALK
plenty serious TALK TALK shines a light on the parts of First Nations art-making that is often left behind the scenes. From the consultative process to intricate community obligations, choreographer Vicki Van Hout skilfully lays bare the complexities of negotiating culture across disciplines, genres and eras. Taking dance theatre and weaving in threads of stand-up, visual art, multimedia and performance, this production has dazzled and charmed audiences since its 2018 premiere.
Photo: Vicki Van Hout
City of Gold
City of Gold is an essential and vital play for Australia in the 21st Century. Actor and playwright Meyne Wyatt’s debut feature explores family, racism and First Nations identity in this seminal play. City of Gold called out the injustice, inequality and wilful amnesia around treatment of First Australians in our country. Meyne Wyatt can no longer be ignored as a bold and important new voice in Australian theatre.
Photo: Brett Boardman
Counting and Cracking
Counting and Cracking brings an epic story of migration to the stage with live music, dance and food. Homebush-based writer S. Shakthidharan tells the story of his family across four generations through a protracted civil war in Sri Lanka to starting a new life in Australia. The play explores complex and confronting social and political issues, while also serving audiences an authentic Sri Lankan meal. It’s an apt piece of storytelling that shares what life in Australia is like for many who experience the hardships and joys of migration.
Photo: Brett Boardman