Brisbane’s much beloved La Boite Theatre has been representing adventurous and alternative theatre experiences in its hometown for over 90 years so it was with much excitement and anticipation that I attended the La Boite Season Launch for 2018. Next year promises audiences more uniquely Australian stories from a wide variety of new writers, actors and offers audiences some interesting collaborations. La Boite says it will be a year of – Your Voices, Your Stories, Your Theatre.
She Brisbane readers will be happy to see a season which has a vital group of female artists leading the charge from writers and actors through to artists- in -residence. Artistic Director and CEO Todd McDonald outlined the year’s program and vision with the help of a group of talented writers and actors before theatre staff served champagne, coffee and cupcakes to a large group of patrons, press and members of Queensland’s thriving theatre community including actor Andrea Moor and writer Krissy Kneen. The newly refurbished foyer area was decorated with some lovely celebratory flower arrangements and guests mingled with many of the cast and crew involved in next year’s productions.
The 2018 Season
Kicking off the new season will be the hilarious play, ‘The Dead Devils Of Cockle Creek’ written by Brisbane playwright Kathryn Marquet. This black comedy will make you laugh at things you wouldn’t normally laugh at and in doing so lead the charge for change. Marquet describes the play as, ‘Mc Donagh meets Tarantino’. Set in an isolated shack in Tasmania this comedy noir shows that sometimes ideology alone is not enough when sometimes all a problem needs is a darn good beating. The story will be brought to life by John Batchelor, Julian Curtis and Emily Weir
When I spoke to patrons about the 2017 program many said they’d enjoyed the plays-‘ Blackrock’ and ‘The Village’. Although these productions were aimed at students, they spoke to a whole cross section of people and I was excited to hear from Todd that ‘The Village’ is returning to invite a wider audience to experience the compelling real stories of refugees and people seeking asylum. Actor Arwin Arwin eloquently told the audience his story of coming to Australia from Afghanistan as a refugee. It will be interesting to experience this highly interactive performance filled with life changing stories told through the eyes of an ensemble of talented young actors.
I was excited to hear about Suzi Miller’s love story, ‘ The Mathematics Of Longing ‘. This is new work from Suzi in collaboration with Gold Coast based dance, theatre company, The Farm. Suzie Miller is a scientist and lawyer so it’s not surprising that this play intersects physics and mathematical theorems with the characters and stories they inspire in an explosion of art and science.
Mid year heralds the debut of a play inspired by Aristophanes’ Lysistrata. Writer Claire Christian takes us into rural Australia with- ‘ Lysa and the Freeborn Dames.’ Claire’s play is a dramedy led by a fierce female chorus. Imagine country Australia where the biggest loudest sporting event you’ve ever been to, with a football game and mighty booze fest, has kicked off. Meanwhile Lysa rallies around a group of women to protest a Trump led free world… the only problem is that only three women show up. Claire’s work promises to be joyous, feminist and accessible to all.
Another female driven work is ‘Neon Tiger’ a love story set in the bars and back alleys of Bangkok. It promises all the fun of the gap year you never knew you needed. This roaring new Australian play with songs is a collaboration between Gillian Cosgriff, Cat Henry and Julia -Rose Lewis. Ten days in Bangkok helped these creative women bond and inspired the trio to tell a story about falling in love under bright lights in a city you know nothing about.
Artists -in -Residence for 2018 include writer Krissy Kneen, artist Jodee Mundy, actor and playwright Ngoc Phan and performer and writer Steven Oliver.
Once again La Boite will be touring Australia and showing new audiences around the country two of our best-loved plays. Audiences will be treated to performances of Michelle Law’s acclaimed ‘ Single Asian Female’ and the Brisbane Festival’s smash hit ‘ Prize Fighter’ with the talented Future D. Fidel.
La Boite Theatre Company has always strived to introduce Queenslanders to new stories, voices and the richness that is to be found in our diverse country. So why not check out the varied program for next season and experience the magic of a show in the unique Roundhouse Theatre.