A Note from Ben, 29 March


We did a bit of an audience survey recently, as you do, and have had a very excitable few weeks unwrapping the responses. So thank you to all the diligent souls that completed yet another online task; it has been so valuable. It proves again that the winning combination of great new Australian plays, and the intimacy of the SBW Stables Theatre is what continues to inspire, confront and beguile our audiences.

I’ve just come from a run of Phil Kavanagh’s Replay, which is moving into the theatre this week, and it is packed with the kind of beautifully constructed, up close and detailed performances praised in the survey. It’s a complex, moving and frighteningly clever piece from one of our most promising young playwrights. I’d love to keep talking about it, but it’s such a minefield of spoilers that I’ll have to leave it there. We’ll continue this talk in the foyer.

Our first Script Club of the year was another fascinating afternoon at the Stables.  John McCallum has selected an astonishing selection of plays from Australia’s past, and asks the assembled group to argue for or against their revival. Last week it was Louis Esson’s Shipwreck, a brutal, expressionist work from the ’20s.  It’s not a history lesson, John asks “what’s in it for today’s audience?” and the debate is on. Again if you like it Australian and intimate, like our survey crowd, you’ll love Script Club. Join us in April for Alex Buzo’s Makassar Reef. And if you are reading this in Melbourne, don’t despair, John is bringing the Club to the VAC for its second year.

And as it’s Easter, I thought you might like to know that Lucky, who starred in last year’s A Rabbit for Kim Jong Il, has shacked up with our production manager, D.K., and the two of them have been sharing digs very comfortably since the show finished.

Theatre you can take home and cuddle. You can’t get much more intimate than that!

Ben Winspear
Associate Artist