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A Note from Declan, 7 July

07.07.22

Dear Grif-friend, 

The steam train of 2022 is in full swing at Griffin—and maybe it’s not a steam train but a high-speed electric bullet train. The past few weeks have been momentous for all the staff and artists working tirelessly around the building and it’s both exhilarating and exhausting! 

Just to rattle off a few things: 

  • We closed the magnificent Ghosting the Party which played to glorious critical and audience acclaim
  • Hot on its heels, Golden Blood (黄金血液) opened to incredible reviews and much audience enthusiasm, replete with foot stomping, riotous curtain calls and invigorating post-show conversation down in The Penny Cook Bar afterwards. A massive congratulations to director Tessa Leong, playwright and performer Merlynn Tong, and her dynamic co-star Charles Wu. If you haven’t seen this show yet, you better get your skates on because you’ve only got a few weeks left! 
  • We wrapped up the End of Financial Year and began a new one (a massive thank you to our passionate family of donors both new and returning! And if you missed it, don’t worry—donating to Griffin is an all-year-round situation) 
  • Our Box Office team processed about a billion Dine & Discover vouchers in a single day—a mammoth effort and if you saw a show using that cheeky discount, thanks very much for supporting us! 

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. As for me, I’ve been rapidly preparing myself to dive in to the world of Whitefella Yella Tree—our next Main Season play, which opens in August. The team and I begin rehearsals next week and I’m very bloody excited.  

The script is an absolutely gorgeous gift from former Griffin Award winner and former Griffin Studio artist Dylan Van Den Berg. The set design from Mason Browne and the lighting concepts by Kelsey Lee are lush and euphoric (with a very ingenious way of making a tree seem to grow in the SBW Stables!). And actors Callan Purcell and Guy Simon made jaws drop around the table with their first sit-down read of the script a couple of weeks ago. I know I say this every time, but this one is going to be special, y’all. Come indulge your sentimental side with this tender, queer First Nations romance. 

Speaking of which… Happy NAIDOC Week! This year’s theme is ‘Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!’ which is such a good mantra for all Australians to wear on their sleeve not just this week, but the whole year round. This is an important time for the whole of Griffin, as a company dedicated to new Australian writing, to reflect and express gratitude to the hugely talented First Nations artists in our creative family, who have created (and continue to create) some of this country’s most incisive, inventive, and hilarious new work on the SBW Stables stage. But there is always more work to do to stand up and show up for our peers on a daily basis. Go out and celebrate NAIDOC Week this weekend—there’s a whole bunch of events on the NAIDOC Week website.

I’ll leave things there because I am under a mountain of work in preparation for Whitefella Yella Tree and I am procrastinating by writing this note to you! Stay well, stay dry and I’ll see you at the SBW Stables Theatre soon.  

Much love,
Declan x  

Declan Greene
Artistic Director

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