adapted from Joan Lindsay’s novel
Black Swan State Theatre Company and Malthouse Theatre
Directed by Matthew Lutton
Designed by Zoë Atkinson
Lighting design by Paul Jackson
Composer Ash Gibson Greig
Sound design by J. David Franzke
With Harriet Gordon Anderson, Arielle Gray, Amber McMahon, Elizabeth Nabben and Nikki Shiels
Heath Ledger Theatre Until April 17
|Arielle Gray, Nikki Shiels, Amber McMahon, Elizabeth Nabben and Harriet Gordon-Anderson (pic Pia Johnson)|
The author Bruce Chatwin described Australia as “a country of lost children”. Unlike settled Britain or frontier America, the Australia confronting its European colonists was empty, smothering and malevolent. A wrong step, the unseen crossing of a creek, an open window, and, as in Frederick McCubbin’s Lost or Paul Kelly’s One Night the Moon, the bush closes in.
It’s unsurprising that Matthew Lutton has been drawn to Picnic at Hanging Rock, an Australian classic and, more than that, part of our mythology.
The achievement of the production is transforming Lindsay’s faux-historicity and the soft-focused erotic mystery of Weir’s film (I’m not its greatest fan) into an all-stops-out horror story.
We never see the Hanging Rock. And this is no picnic.
Read the complete review in The West Australian