A laugh-out-loud, provocative new romantic comedy by fearless columnist and an award-winning playwright Nakkiah Lui, Sydney Theatre Company (STC) presents the world premiere season of Black is the New White, currently playing at the Wharf 1 Theatre until 17 June 2017.
Charlotte Gibson is a lawyer on the up. She won a landmark Native Title case, she’s making her parents proud, she could have her own TV show tomorrow. As her father Ray says, she could be the next feminist Indigenous Waleed Aly. But she has other ideas. First of all, it’s Christmas. Second of all, she’s in love.
Charlotte’s fiancé, Francis Smith, is not what her family expected. He’s an unemployed experimental classical composer… and he’s white! Bringing him and his conservative parents to meet her family on their ancestral land is a bold move. Will he stand up to the scrutiny? Or will this romance descend into farce?
Love is never just black and white. It’s complicated by class, politics, ambition, and too much wine over dinner. But for Charlotte and Francis, it’s mostly complicated by family. Secrets are revealed, prejudices outed and old rivalries get sorted through. What can’t be solved through diplomacy can surely be solved by a good old-fashioned dance-off. They’re just that kind of family.
Directed by STC’s former Richard Wherrett Fellow Paige Rattray (now Queensland Theatre’s Associate Artistic Director), the cast includes Kylie Bracknell, Tony Briggs, Luke Carroll, Geoff Morrell and Shari Sebbens, with set and costumes by former Resident Designer Renée Mulder.
Commissioned by STC, writer Nakkiah Lui shows why she is one of this country’s most in-demand young voices. With a toe-tapping soundtrack and an array of brilliant, eccentric, lovable characters, Lui delivers cutting satire that is both seductively subversive and thoroughly delightful.
Nakkiah Lui’s previous plays include: Blaque Showgirls, Kill the Messenger, Blak Cabaret, Blackie Blackie Brown: The Traditional Owners of Death, Stho Sthexy, I Should Have Told You Before We Made Love (That I’m Black) and This Heaven’ Playwright. A monthly columnist for The Australian Women’s Weekly, she contributes to The Guardian and Junkee and has appeared on ABC’s Q&A and The Drum and as a regular guest and presenter on ABC Radio Sydney.
Director: Paige Rattray Featuring: James Bell, Kylie Bracknell, Tony Briggs, Luke Carroll, Vanessa Downing, Geoff Morrell, Melodie Reynolds-Diarra, Shari Sebbens, Anthony Taufa Designer: Renée Mulder Lighting Designer: Ben Hughes Composer & Sound Designer: Steve Toulmin
Black is the New White
Wharf 1 Theatre – Sydney Theatre Company, Pier 4/5 Hickson Road, Walsh Bay (Sydney)
Season continues to 17 June 2017
Information and Bookings: www.sydneytheatre.com.au
Image: Black is the New White – photo by Prudence Upton