Following triumphant seasons across the country, State Theatre Company South Australia presents Melanie Tait’s affectionate Australian comedy, The Appleton Ladies’ Potato Race, at Adelaide’s Royalty Theatre from 4 June 2021.
Based on Tait’s real experiences of the potato race in her hometown of Robertson, NSW (where her parents own The Big Potato), The Appleton Ladies’ Potato Race is an effervescent, hilarious and big-hearted tale about women taking action and smashing the glass ceiling, one potato sack at a time.
Appleton is the quintessential small Australian country town. There are those in the town who embrace change, like long-time resident Barb. And there are those, like Barb’s friend Bev, who aren’t fans of the tree-changers and their city ways.
Penny returns to her childhood home just in time for the Appleton Show and its famous potato race, where the winning man’s prize is $1,000 and the winning woman’s prize is… $200?
Not if Penny has anything to do with it. The determined doctor swings into action to right this wrong; she’s going to smash through the glass ceiling, one potato sack at a time.
Director Elena Carapetis leads a local cast including Anna Steen, Genevieve Mooy, Carmel Johnson and Sarah Brokensha, plus Susie Youssef (ABC’s Rosehaven, Network Ten’s The Project and the upcoming Making It Australia) in her STCSA debut.
Set & costume designer Kathryn Sproul will transform the Royalty Theatre stage into the small fictional country town of Appleton alongside lighting designer Nic Mollison and sound designer Andrew Howard, who will reunite following their work on STCSA’s recent hit with Country Arts SA, Euphoria.
Artistic Director Mitchell Butel says he hopes The Appleton Ladies’ Potato Race will leave audiences filled with joy. “Sometimes you finish reading a play and you immediately know you should program it because your gut tells you how much audiences are going to fall in love with it,” he says.
“Playwright Melanie Tait takes the very specific and makes it universal, with one small race becoming a metaphor for much bigger battles. It’s a charming, surprising and hilarious work and I can’t wait for audiences to see what we have in store.”
Director: Elena Carapetis Featuring: Sarah Brokensha, Carmel Johnson, Genevieve Mooy, Anna Steen, Susie Youssef Set & Costume Designer: Kathryn Sproul Lighting Designer: Nic Mollison Sound Designer: Andrew Howard
The Appleton Ladies’ Potato Race
Royalty Theatre, 65 Angas Street, Adelaide
Season: 8 – 19 June 2021 (previews: 4 – 7 June)
Information and Bookings: www.statetheatrecompany.com.au
Image: The cast of The Appleton Ladies’ Potato Race – photo by Thomas McCammon