Twelve years in the making, wild and funny until it’s not, National Theatre of Parramatta presents The Girl / The Woman by Aanisa Vylet – an exhilarating two-woman collision of body and mind, desire and tradition, language and visionary theatricality – at the Riverside Theatres from 28 June 2018.
The Girl trips over her sexuality and lands on her mother’s traditions. She turns to her best friend and enabler – the Internet. Her mother, meanwhile, hates to leave the house – a tiring but familiar refuge from an ever-changing outside world. She spends her days listening to Al Jazeera. She left Lebanon for a reason but was this really the new life she imagined for herself?
A comedy with a sting in the tail, The Girl was shortlisted for the Philip Parsons Young Playwrights Award in 2015, and nominated for The West Australian Arts Editor Award in 2016. Now reworked with an additional story The Woman; The Girl / The Woman is a gripping and powerful world-premiere directed by Dino Dimitriadis (Metamorphoses, Doubt: A Parable, Construction of the Human Heart, Danny and the Deep Blue Sea).
An immensely talented writer and performer, Vylet is a regular on both the stage and screen. Her recent acting credits include: Martyrs (STC 2016), Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo (Mad March Theatre Co, 2017), Where the Streets Had a Name (Monkey Baa, 2017), Pulse (ABC, 2017) and Fighting Season (Foxtel, 2017).
“In the creation of this work, I’ve had to face up to myself as a female writer and as a woman from a strict cultural background growing up in Western Sydney – making her own choices,” says Vylet. “I’ve had to make sure I’m not just repeating the narrative I’ve taken on subconsciously as I’ve grown up. I’m trying to empower women to allow themselves to be seen. We are ultimately agents of our own empowerment.”
As for the form of the work, Vylet explains that this isn’t your average night in the theatre. “This work is a rare experience that is designed to hit the audience in the gut rather than the head,” she says. “My theatrical language isn’t naturalism as such and my training and the artists I have collaborated with have helped me listen to and trust my authentic voice.”
Director: Dino Dimitriadis Featuring: Aanisa Vylet, Nisrine Amine Set and Costume Design: Jonathan Hindmarsh Sound Design: Ben Pierpoint, Mary Rapp Lighting Design: Benjamin Ross Brockman Creative Futures Assistant to the Director: Moreblessing Maturure Production Manager: Kirby Brierty Production Coordinator: Felix Johnson Stage Manager: Ruth Horsfall Playwright: Aanisa Vylet
The Girl / The Woman
Lennox Theatre – Riverside Theatres, Corner Church and Market Streets, Parramatta
Season: 28 June – 7 July 2018
Information and Bookings: www.riversideparramatta.com.au
Image: Aanisa Vylet – photo by Maryna Rothe