Lab Kelpie BrokenWinner of both the Victorian Prize for Literature and the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Drama, Lab Kelpie presents the Melbourne premiere of Broken by Mary Anne Butler at fortyfivedownstairs for a limited season from 16 November 2018.

A car crash in the Central Desert. A broken man, about to leave his wife. A damaged woman, struggling to stay intact. Broken entwines the stories of three complex lives as they unfold on a single fateful night. In a distinctly Australian voice, Butler’s poetic, evocative play merges these complex lives to explore ideas of isolation, circumstance and resilience.

Set in the vast Central Desert outside Alice Springs, Broken is inspired by the true story of a woman found alive on the side of the Stuart Highway 36 hours after rolling her car, and a paramedic who told Butler that intense bonds between trauma victims and their rescuers are very common. Broken asks, what if you couldn’t let go of that bond? What if that moment lead to the questioning of your entire life and the destruction of everything you’d built?

Following rave reviews for A Prudent Man, Spencer and Oil Babies, Lab Kelpie has established a reputation as one of Australia’s leading independent theatre companies, and a champion of new Australian writing. Mary Anne Butler’s Broken continues this trend, directed by the inimitable Susie Dee.

Recipient of the 2018 Melbourne Fringe Festival’s Living Legend Award, Dee won a Green Room Award last year for her direction of Animal, and recently received her first Helpmann Award nomination for directing Patricia Cornelius’ play SHIT.

In Broken, Dee directs a stellar cast, including four-time Green Room Award nominee Lyall Brooks (A Prudent Man, Spencer), Green Room Award nominee Sophie Ross (Malthouse Theatre’s The Real and Imagined History of the Elephant Man, Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again.) and Naomi Rukavina (Malthouse Theatre’s Away).

“This is exquisite writing. It’s immediate. It’s lean. It’s poetic. It’s visceral. It takes you right into the heart of the experiences it describes.” – Andrew Bovell

Director: Susie Dee Featuring: Lyall Brooks, Sophie Ross, Naomi Rukavina Set and Costume Design: Marg Horwell Lighting Design: Andy Turner Sound Design: Ian Moorhead

Fortyfivedownstairs, 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne
Season: 16 – 25 November 2018 (preview: 15 November)

For more information, visit: for details.

Image: Naomi Rukavina, Lyall Brooks, Sophie Ross feature in Broken – photo by Pier Carthew