Separating The Dust
Separating The Dust
Controversial play - tonight!
Ingrid Gang and Stephen Mitchell on stage in Separating
Newspaper: The Guardian
Dated: Friday, 6 August 2010
Written by: Kylie Kitchen
Headline: Controversial play - tonight!
Controversial local play, Separating The Dust will open national theatre tour, Shorter and Sweeter's visit to Kyneton Town Hall tonight.
The Cosmic Players production was recently rejected from the upcoming Kyneton Daffodil and Arts Festival One Act Plays Festival after it was deemed inappropriate for Kyneton audiences. In the play, brothers fight over their mother's final will and testament. There is some violence, sexual references and other confronting themes.
It was these themes that saw the Daffodil Festival reject the play and Macedon Ranges Council request it.
"When you go to a drama performance you expect to see some confronting material," MRSC Cultural Development team leader, Robyn Till said. "We think it's really good, and we're a little bit tired in this department of reality TV. This is real actors, a real director, real performances, challenging us, making us think and feel. It's a story about us, not some American cop show."
Ms Till expects the audience will enjoy a powerful and uncensored performance.
"For theatre-goers and drama people, people regularly attend theatre, I don't expect that they will be too confronted," she said. "We read about it on the front cover of the Guardian in "Drama for 'unsuitable' play" (two weeks ago). "It's sparked a bit of intrigue, so here's a bit of an opportunity to come and have a look at what it's all about."
The Shorter and Sweeter Tour is well-known among theatre-goers as 'the biggest little play festival in the world." A number of 10-minute pieces in various genres make up the tour. The works are some of the best pieces from recent festivals, with top actors, writers and directors.
Separating The Dust is likely to be matched tonight with equally controversial plays, while comedy and romance plays will provide some contrast. Mr Brealey - Separating The Dust playwright and director, is excited and flattered at the opportunity to perform ahead of the Shorter and Sweeter Tour tonight.
"It's a great honour to be asked to perform not only at the Kyneton Town Hall, which I think is a magnificent venue, but also alongside Shorter and Sweeter. It usually means it's the cream of the crop, it's such a compliment to perform alongside it," he said.
The invitation to perform may help break some limitations imposed on local theatre, Mr Brealey said. "I think that vindicates my opinion in the Guardian; I think the people of Kyneton are a lot more intelligent and well-rounded to theatre, I feel vindicated in my opinion with the council asking us to perform," he said.
"I hope it allows other plays of the genre my play is to be performed in Kyneton in the future." Community interest in the play has people discussing what makes good, engaging theatre and what needs to change. They want something different, they want to be challenged, we want to think, we want something different than the same old," Mr Brealey said.
"What people are supporting is the idea that theatre isn't something from the 30s or 40s, people want something a bit more intelligent and thought-provoking."
Separating The Dust is touring for the Victorian Drama League one-act play season and won 'best play' at the Dandenong Ranges recently. Council advises Separating The Dust and The Shorter and Sweeter Tour contain some adult content, however children's tickets are available.
"We think it's covering some sensitive topics, we do ask that people who are considering bringing children be aware of the content," Ms Till said.
Separating The Dust will start at 7pm and is free. Shorter and Sweeter ticket holders will be given priority seating.
Shorter and Sweeter starts at 8pm and tickets are available at or at the shire offices (tickets cost $35).