By Merlynn Tong
24 June - 30 July 2022
Golden Blood feels like a big-screen thriller, even though it’s got a cast of two. Playing out on the neon streets of Singapore, it desperately claws back the extreme wealth it once knew, holding a rusty machete between its teeth.
Originally slated for our 2021 Season, Merlynn Tong’s Golden Blood is back and hungrier than ever in 2022.
When her mother dies, a teenage girl is left alone within the four walls of the only thing she’s inherited—a decaying penthouse in the heart of Singapore. To make matters worse, she’s now in the care of her estranged brother, and he’s not exactly up to the gig. For one, he’s only a few years older than her. And two, he’s a gangster.
Like, an actual one.
Left with next to nothing, the orphaned siblings become a formidable, atypical corporation of two. But it’s not long before cracks begin to show. What is the trade-off for desiring excessive levels of luxury? What should be kept in this world, and what should be offered to the next?
Merlynn Tong is an unstoppable acting-writing polymath—directed at the centre of her own play by Griffin’s Associate Artistic Director Tessa Leong. Golden Blood will make its long-awaited premiere in 2022, presented in a unique partnership with our friends at Melbourne Theatre Company.
Want to go deeper? View the online program
‘If you’ve spent more than three seconds in Merlynn Tong’s magnetic presence you’ll know how masterfully she paints pictures of life in Singapore. Golden Blood is no exception. It’s a wild tale of resilience, family ties, and dirty money.’
Director Tessa Leong
Set & Costume Designer Michael Hankin
Lighting Designer Fausto Brusamolino
Composer & Sound Designer Rainbow Chan
Producer Eloise Snape
Dramaturg Jennifer Medway
Effects Consultant Emily Parsons-Lord
Stage Manager Susie Henderson
Stage Manager Jen Jackson
With Merlynn Tong, Charles Wu
Preview 24 – 28 June
Opening Nights 29 & 30 June
Season 1 – 30 July
Monday – Friday 7pm
Saturday 1pm & 7pm
Meet the Artists
Tuesday 5 July
Tuesday 12 July
Australian Malaysian Singaporean Association and Asian Australian Alliance Post-Show Q&A
Tuesday 19 July
90 minutes (no interval)
Please note, there is a complete lock-out on all performances and latecomers won’t be admitted, so make sure you give yourself plenty of time to get to us, grab a drink, and get settled.
2022 Main Season Ticket Pricing
|Senior, Preview, Groups 8+||$52|
*Monday Rush tickets are available online and over the phone on Mondays from noon, for that evening’s performance until sold out.
2022 Season Subscription Pricing
|6 Play||5 Play||4 Play|
|Senior, Preview||$240||Senior, Preview||$205||Senior, Preview||$176|
|Under 35||$192||Under 35||$170||Under 35||$140|
|3 Play||2 Play||Griffin Lookout|
|Senior, Preview||$138||Senior, Preview||$98||2-pack||$64|
|Under 35||$108||Under 35||$74||Under 35|
Meet the Cast
What is Singlish?
“Tong combines vulnerability with strength and determination. This is very much Girl’s story and her coming-of-age journey is deeply affecting.” ★★★★—Joyce Morgan, The Sydney Morning Herald
“Both actors bring a marvellous sense of depth to the characters they inhabit, allowing Golden Blood to venture into outlandish and wondrous spaces, without compromising even a fragment on authenticity.” ★★★★—Suzy Wrong, Suzy Goes See
“One of those rare combinations of great writing, great actors and a great sense of mise-en-scene.” ★★★★—Charlotte Smee, Theatre Thoughts
“Golden Blood is an enthralling 90 minutes of theatre superbly performed by two spellbinding actors.” Catherine Skipper, South Sydney Herald
“An impressive and compelling production. Tong is a voice to watch.” Ned Hirst, ArtsHub
“The chemistry between Wu and Tong is the show’s greatest strength.” Jasmine Joyan, Time Out Sydney
“Director Tessa Leong elicits terrific performances from a super cast.” Paul Gilchrist, Theatre Red
“Each revelation is unexpected and emotionally impactful.” Vaanie Krishnan, The Theatre Enthusiast
“It makes us consider the boundaries we will break, and the lengths we will go to, for family.” Toasting Aussie Theatre
“Merlynn Tong’s Golden Blood is a feverish, drug-induced, dream-like, fire-cracker adventure.” Josephine Lee, Night Writes
“Tong has made a significant contribution to the Asian-Australian voice in the arts.” Jennifer Fernandez, UNSW Blitz
The story, the names, the characters, and the incidents portrayed in this play are fictitious.
No identification with actual persons (living or deceased), places, buildings, and products is intended or should be inferred. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
Golden Blood contains depictions of blood, death/dying, drug use, mental illness, violence, vomit and weapons. The play contains coarse language and descriptions of alcoholism, child abuse, overdoses, sexual references and suicide. Naked flames and haze are present in the play.
If you have questions regarding the content of the play, please don’t hesitate to contact our Box Office team prior to your performance.
24-Hour NSW Mental Health Line
1800 011 511
13 11 14
Commissioned through Melbourne Theatre Company’s NEXT STAGE Writers’ Program, supported by MTC’s Playwrights Giving Circle