A year of new horizons for Black Swan in 2017

BSSTC Let The Right One In with actors Sophia Forrest and Ian Michael - photo by Robert FrithAfter celebrating the company’s 25th birthday in 2016, Black Swan State Theatre Company looks to the future, while at the same time acknowledge those who have made a significant impact on the company in announcing their 2017 season.

Black Swan fondly farewell’s their Artistic Director of nine years Kate Cherry, who has programmed the majority of the 2017 season. The Company will honour their Founding Artistic Director Andrew Ross who will direct the rarely seen and engaging absurdist classic – Beckett’s Endgame, while welcoming new Artistic Director Clare Watson, making her directorial debut with the Swedish romantic horror Let the Right One In.

“2016 has been a great year for Black Swan and I thank all of you for your support. I hope that you have enjoyed immersing yourself in the 2016 season,” says outgoing Artistic Director, Kate Cherry. “I have certainly had a great time presenting it to you.”

“I have planned the 2017 season as your loving and committed outgoing Artistic Director of Black Swan. As such, I have chosen to plan the season like a constant gardener. I have pruned to ensure there is space to honour the past, celebrate the present and assist in launching the future.”

“I have planted seeds in the hope that new plants will emerge, offering delight, solace and a healthy sense of carefully managed chaos. And so the 2017 season is a plethora of possibilities, a joyous garden running wild, but nurtured with love and shaped by experience.”

The year commences with the heartfelt and life – affirming work Once in Royal David’s City by Australian playwright Michael Gow, in a co-production with Queensland Theatre. Black Swan are excited to be working with Sam Strong, the new Artistic Director of Queensland Theatre, and continuing our successful collaborations with the company which was established by our outgoing Artistic Director Kate Cherry and Michael Gow.

Black Swan are thrilled to welcome back founding Artistic Director Andrew Ross, whose joyous, aspirational vision of what theatre might become was demonstrated with cross-cultural casting, Australian interpretations of the classics, music, dance and a spattering of new forms profuse with Western Australian imagery. Andrew will direct Samuel Beckett’s absurd classic Endgame, and re-unite with three Western Australian actors Geoff Kelso, Kelton Pell and George Shevstov, who all appeared in Black Swan’s inaugural production back in 1991 amongst many others.

Winner of Best New Australian work at the Sydney Theatre Awards, about the last three days in the life of the American crime writer Patricia Highsmith of The Talented Mr Ripley series, Black Swan presents highly acclaimed Australian playwright Joanna Murray-Smith’s edge-of-your-seat psychological thriller, Switzerland. Lawrie Cullen-Tait (Venus in Fur) will make her mainstage directorial debut for the company with theatre stalwart Jenny Davis, as the late great acerbic writer Patricia Highsmith.

In an Australian premiere, we present the stage adaptation by Jack Thorne, of the acclaimed Swedish novel and film Let the Right One In – a gothic coming of age love story. This is the directorial debut of our newly appointed Artistic Director Clare Watson and will features a cast of nine with a number of acting graduates making their stage debuts as part of Black Swan’s the
WAAPA Bridging Program.

To our burgeoning Black Swan Lab in the Studio Underground, we will present a record four productions! The season includes a Rio Tinto Black Swan Co-commission of a new Australian play by our resident writer Hellie Turner and directed by one of our Associate Directors, Stuart Halusz. The Lighthouse Girl highlights a significant piece of history from regional WA and this family friendly adaptation will have its World Premiere in Albany as part of the ANZAC Day commemorations at the Albany Entertainment Centre before a Perth season.

Debuting in Western Australian and at Black Swan is the comic fantasy and award winning hit from the New York International Fringe Festival, The Eisteddfod by Lally Katz, who emerged from the Melbourne indie theatre scene to become one of Australia’s hottest playwrights. Directed by Associate Director Jeffrey Jay Fowler, the creative team includes some of WA’s most exciting emerging theatre talents.

After making his directorial debut in 2016 we premiere the daring and imaginative pen of Will O’Mahony, who will also direct the co-production with Performing Lines WA, a magical epic tale, celebrating children, difference and the depths of parental love in Coma Land.

In a tour de force role, actor Brendan Hanson will portray over 30 characters in the Pulitzer and Tony award winning I Am My Own Wife – an examination of the life of German antiquarian Charlotte van Mahlsdorf, who survived the Nazi and Communist regimes as a transvestite. This marks the company’s directorial debut for Joe Lui – one of WA’s leading independent artists.

Subscriptions are now available, with single tickets on sale on Friday 4 November 2016. For more information, visit: www.bsstc.com.au for details.

Image: Sophia Forrest and Ian Michael feature in Let The Right One In – photo by Robert Frith