Playwright Mary Anne Butler returns to Darlinghurst Theatre Company with a powerfully poetic allegory for a world which has closed its doors on humanity. The Sound of Waiting will have its Sydney premiere season at the Eternity Playhouse from 31 March 2018.
Written in response to Tony Abbott’s infamous comment, “Jesus knew there was a place for everyone and it’s not necessarily everyone’s place to come to Australia.” The Sound of Waiting is a vital story to tell, right now, and explores the plight of asylum seekers, looking at themes of resilience, humanity, hope and displacement and posing the central question: As a global community, where do we go to from here?
A tiny wooden boat is battered by roaring seas, on board Hamed Mokri cradles his small daughter. His former homeland now more perilous than the seas he’s fighting, his daughter the very last soul he can protect other than his own. Meanwhile, an Angel of Death hangs over them with reckoning, conjuring up all its power to send them both to the bottom of the unknown sea – silent, and black, and endless.
On the play, Mary Anne Butler says “this isn’t a political play; it’s an empathy play, a human story that asks how do we look after each other, from the micro to the macro… small acts of kindness which together can fuel a whole world… every single one of us is responsible for making the world a better place.”
Directed by Suzanne Pereira (Man With Five Children, Sweet Phoebe), The Sound of Waiting features Sydney Theatre Award nominee Gabrielle Scawthorn (Hurt, Ride and Fourplay), and making his professional theatre debut, Reza Momenzada, who migrated to Australia from Afghanistan in 2000.
Mary Anne Butler is a Darwin-based playwright whose plays have been described as ‘poetic, evocative and muscular’. Theatre credits include Half Way There, Highway of Lost Hearts, Broken, The Sound of Waiting, Alice in Wonderland [adaptation] and Cusp.
Playwriting awards include the Victorian Prize for Literature, Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Drama and NT Book of the Year. Nominations include the Nick Enright Prize for Playwriting [NSW Premier’s Literary Awards], Stage AWGIE and Griffin Theatre Award.
Mary Anne is a four-time winner of the NT Literary Awards for Best Script, a 2016 Sidney Myer Creative Fellow, 2016 Asialink recipient, 2014 Churchill Fellow and a 2015 Regional Arts Fellow. She holds an MPhil in Creative Writing and an MEd in Arts Education, and is a co-artistic director of Knock-em-Down Theatre.
“The Sound of Waiting should be on every stage in every city and town of Australia.” – Real Time
Director: Suzanne Pereira Featuring: Reza Momenzada, Gabrielle Scawthorn Set and Video Designer: Sam James Sound Designer: Tegan Nicholls Lighting Designer: Chris Page Stage Manager: Gayda De Mesa Wardrobe Supervisor: Natalie Hughes
The Sound of Waiting
Eternity Playhouse, 39 Burton Street, Darlinghurst
Season: 4 – 22 April 2018 (previews: 31 March – 3 April)
Information and Bookings: www.darlinghursttheatre.com for details.
Image: courtesy of Darlinghurst Theatre Company