Melbourne Talam

MTC Melbourne TalamEnergised with Melbourne’s urban intensity and cultural diversity, Melbourne Talam by Rashma N. Kalsie is a vibrant new play that puts our city’s contemporary social issues centre stage.

Directed by Petra Kalive and starring Rohan Mirchandaney (Hotel Mumbai), Sahil Saluja (The Colour of Darkness), and Sonya Suares (Assassins), Melbourne Talam explores the notion of belonging through the stories of three young people from India trying to make Melbourne their home.

Jasminder, Poorna and Sonali see each other across a crowded Flagstaff station. They just missed the train. Now they wait. And think. They think about home: Punjab, Delhi, Hyderabad. And of all the seemingly impossible things they must do to stay in Melbourne. And about how they just can’t seem to get the city’s Talam – its rhythm – right. A sudden and calamitous event changes the lives of all three, and their future in Australia.

Melbourne Talam is a play alive with the rhythm of Melbourne,” says Kalive. “Rashma’s writing, inspired by real events, is a timely response to the world we live in. For some audiences, the lives of the characters may echo their own experience, while for others, these stories will offer a new perspective on Australian life. We have an exceptional team working on this world premiere production and can’t wait to share it with others.”

Petra Kalive is currently Artistic Director of Union House Theatre at the University of Melbourne Student Union. Previously for MTC, Petra directed the Patrick White Award-Winning Play Beached for MTC Education, In the Kingdom of Cha for Cybec Electric, and was Assistant Director on Constellations.

Petra has also directed for fortyfivedownstairs (Taxithi), La Mama, Arena Theatre Company, Complete Works, St Martins Youth Arts Centre and Monash and Latrobe University’s Performing Arts Program, and was Assistant Director on STC’s 2014 production of Macbeth.

Petra was Co-Artistic Director of Melbourne Playback Theatre Company from 2011-2014, Dramaturg at Red Stitch in 2009-2012 and was Assistant Dramaturg at the Malthouse in 2010. She also works professionally as an actor, dramaturg and facilitator.

Rashma N. Kalsie is an established journalist and television scriptwriter who splits her time between Melbourne and Delhi. Her most recent play, The Rejected Girl, was short-listed in an India-wide contest for one-act plays. Rashma was formerly a participant in MTC CONNECT – a partnership between Multicultural Arts Victoria and Melbourne Theatre Company that engages talented theatre practitioners from diverse communities to build a richer arts landscape.

Through MTC CONNECT, Rashma was able to access dramaturgical support for Melbourne Talam and it was later presented at the NEON Readings program in July 2015 and further developed as part of Cybec Electric 2016.

Director: Petra Kalive Featuring: Rohan Mirchandaney, Sahil Saluja, Sonya Suares Set & Costume Designer: Andrew Bailey Lighting Designer: Rachel Burke Composer & Sound Designer: Darius Kedros

Melbourne Talam
The Lawler – Southbank Theatre, Southbank Boulevard, Southbank
Season: 6 – 20 May 2017

Following its season at the Southbank Theatre, Melbourne Talam will tour to selected Victorian regional venues and Launceston from 23 May 2017. For more information, visit: for details.

Image: Rohan Mirchandaney, Sonya Suares, and Sahil Saluja feature in Melbourne Talam – courtesy of MTC