Lake Disappointment

Carriageworks Lake Disappointment photo by Laura ScrivanoInvestigating notions of celebrity and the challenges of being ordinary in an increasingly image obsessed culture, Carriageworks presents the world premiere of Lake Disappointment from 20 April 2016.

Collaborating as writers for the first time, Lachlan Philpott and Helpmann Award-winning actor Luke Mullins, Lake Disappointment dives into the deep strangeness of life as a Hollywood body double. Performed by Mullins, and directed by Malthouse Theatre Director in Residence Janice Muller, this new work will feature a stunning atmospheric sound design by James Brown.

In Lake Disappointment, the body double (played by Luke Mullins) is devoted to his star counter Kane. Their last film Briefcase Bomb was such a hit that they are moving out of art-house film into more mainstream blockbusters. Before they head to Paris to shoot the biggest budget action film of all time, they are to work on Lake Disappointment – an obscure small budget film with a shoot in a remote mountain town.

The double is sent to the set of Lake Disappointment early to save Kane time. On arriving the double notices that there is something peculiar about this town with its silvery lake. The film’s content and ambition also confuse the body double. Kane’s character spends a huge amount of time searching for a lake but can never actually find it.

On set the body double makes friends with Kane’s strange co-star Linda Hunt. She plays the guest house owner in the film but also seems to be doing that job in real life. Linda asks the double questions which provoke him to start looking at this world and himself in a very different way. Kane’s arrival keeps being postponed. The shoot becomes increasingly difficult for the double. Worryingly, whenever he finds himself near water…. he starts having thoughts.

“Our initial inspiration came from encounters with two body doubles; one being the double of well-known Australian actor,” said co-writer Lachlan Philpott. “In a newspaper feature, the double claimed to be madly excited because he was going to finally achieve a life-long acting dream to go to the Oscars because the doubles’ actor had been nominated for an Academy Award. But the question we had was: who does he go as?”

“In researching Lake Disappointment, we have spent an enormous amount of time investigating doubling, doubles, twins and narcissism. We have drawn inspiration from Dorian Gray, Edgar Allen Poe and Shakespeare. This play delves beneath the surface of our image obsessed world and highlights issues around contemporary identity.”

“Do doubles surrender their own ambitions and identity? asks Philpott. “When you consider the business of being somebody’s double, so many fascinating questions arise and this is what Lake Disappointment is about.”

Lake Disappointment
Carriageworks, 245 Wilson Street, Eveleigh
Season: 20 – 24 April 2016

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Image: Luke Mullins stars in Lake Disappointment – photo by Laura Scrivano