Melbourne Theatre Company announces 2014 season

MTC 2014 editorialMelbourne Theatre Company’s Artistic Director, Brett Sheehy has revealed his Season 2014 in a launch at Hamer Hall that features eleven mainstage plays, two add-on productions and two education shows.

The 2014 Season includes five world premiere productions (The Sublime, The Speechmaker, Pennsylvania Avenue, Complexity of Belonging, and education show, Marlin) and three Australian premieres (Cock, Once, I’ll Eat You Last) from the UK and US.

Timeless masterpieces are revisted including Henrik Ibsen’s Ghosts, David Mamet’s Glengarry Glen Ross and Noël Coward’s perennially delightful Private Lives.

The 2014 Season also features recent works from award-winning playwrights: John Logan’s I’ll Eat You Last, and Lally Katz’s Neighbourhood Watch.

A host of celebrated actors grace MTC’s stages in 2014 including Miriam Margolyes, Sigrid Thornton, Robyn Nevin, Lucy Durack, Bernadette Robinson, Zahra Newman, Philip Quast, Alex Dimitriades and Richard Piper.

Award-winning directors including John Tiffany, Gale Edwards, Alkinos Tsilimidos, Simon Stone, MTC’s Associate Artistic Director Sam Strong and Associate Director Leticia Cáceres. For the first time Missy Higgins composes original music for MTC’s stage.

“Our season illuminates stories and artists, firing the imaginations of our audience, both in Melbourne and beyond,” says Artistic Director Brett Sheehy.

“We present some of the finest storytelling imaginable across more than 550 performances on our stages to entertain, challenge and delight you. This season sees MTC collaborate with a range of thrilling artists and companies ensuring a vibrant and dynamic year of theatre.”

Associate Artistic Director Sam Strong opens the 2014 mainstage season with Noël Coward’s delightful comedy of manners, Private Lives. This witty tale about love, lust and marriage stars recent Helpmann Award-winner Lucy Durack (Wicked, Legally Blonde) alongside Leon Ford, Julie Forsyth and John Leary.

MTC Associate Director Leticia Caceres explores sexuality and indecision in the Australian premiere of Cock by one of Britain’s most exciting young playwrights, Mike Bartlett.

Robyn Nevin stars in Belvoir’s critically acclaimed production of Lally Katz’s Neighbourhood Watch presented for the first time in Melbourne, directed by theatre wunderkind, Simon Stone.

Internationally renowned Australian director Gale Edwards returns to direct Henrik Ibsen’s unflinching critique of marriage and social convention in Ghosts, starring Pip Edwards, Richard Piper and Philip Quast.

From the team that brought you The Dish, The Castle and Frontline, Australia’s comic royalty, Santo Cilauro, Tom Gleisner and Rob Sitch mark their playwriting debuts with a razor sharp political satire about global power and the fumbling hands that hold it in The Speechmaker, directed by MTC Associate Artistic Director Sam Strong.

Thirty years since its debut, David Mamet’s Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning portrayal of testosterone-fuelled competitiveness set in a cutthroat Chicago real estate office is just as bold and relevant today. Glengarry Glen Ross stars Alex Dimitriades in a timely story for our post-GFC world.

In her long-awaited return to the stage, Sigrid Thornton stars in the Australian premiere of Lucy Prebble’s provocative play The Effect, which tackles our notion of happiness in a chemically-controlled reality directed by MTC Associate Director Leticia Cáceres.

Australian actor and writer Brendan Cowell’s brilliantly perceptive The Sublime puts footy, mateship, social media and sex scandals under the microscope just in time for AFL final season directed by Associate Artistic Director Sam Strong.

The eight Tony Award-winning Broadway hit Once makes its long-awaited Australian debut with an all-Australian cast, directed by its original West End and Broadway director, John Tiffany. The Gordon Frost Organisation in association with MTC proudly present the first five weeks of this whimsical celebration of friendship, love and the power of music.

Distinguished actress Miriam Margolyes stars as the legendary Hollywood agent, Sue Mengers, in the wickedly hilarious one-woman show, I’ll Eat You Last by John Logan in its Australian premiere.

MTC’s mainstage season closes with a reunion of the smash hit Songs for Nobodies team, Joanna Murray-Smith, Bernadette Robinson and former MTC Artistic Director Simon Phillips for a brand new music theatre production, Pennsylvania Avenue.

MTC’s 2014 Education Season furthers the Company’s commitment to making theatre accessible to audiences of all ages by expanding our offering to include theatre for both primary and secondary school students.

The season features a contemporary tale of Bonnie and Clyde in Yellow Moon directed by Associate Director Leticia Cáceres, and a collaboration with Arena Theatre for audiences aged eight and up in a new work, Marlin directed by Christian Leavesley.

In addition to MTC’s mainstage and education seasons, we present two exciting add-on productions. For the first time, MTC is delighted to present a contemporary choreographic theatre work in a co-production between Chunky Move, MTC, Melbourne Festival and Brisbane Festival.

Complexity of Belonging is a new project by Falk Richter and Anouk van Dijk that explores identity in the age of social media, seamlessly integrating dancers, actors, text and movement.

Coinciding with the January 2014 school holidays, MTC presents a charming production for audiences aged five and up from award-winning children’s theatre company Windmill Theatre.

Rosemary Myers directs Big Bad Wolf, an enchanting tale about the most misunderstood character in fairytale history, written by Matthew Whittet.

Building on the critical success of the pioneering NEON Festival of Independent Theatre, MTC has announced the five Melbourne-based independent companies participating in 2014: Angus Cerini/Doubletap; Antechamber Productions & Daniel Keene; Arthur; Little Ones Theatre; and Sans Hotel.

“Through our Season 2014, MTC highlights some of Australia’s best artists and welcomes new creative talent to our stages. Next year we present a range of work to delight theatregoers of all ages and tastes, both on our mainstages and beyond,” says Brett Sheehy.

“We hope you enjoy our Season 2014 as we cue lights, sound, action for a fantastic year of theatremaking.”

For more information and full season details, visit:

Image: courtesy of Melbourne Theatre Company