Night Writes was joined by performer Jon Lam to discuss the upcoming production Moon Rabbit Rising by Little Eggs Collective.
Tell us about Moon Rabbit Rising.
Moon Rabbit Rising is THE Emergence of an old Imperial-Majestic-all-embracing series of tales sprung from verbals travelled from literally centuries around the world and established from mythological sources. There are many variations on the stories/tales – of Power, Love, Hate – all depending from where the source came. In advising various people who were interested in attending MRR, I have inadvertently give so many different versions or tellings, maybe confusing some. In today’s world there would be great epic films that would be handled by the likes of Russian Sergei Bondarchuk (1968 six-hour epic War and Peace), David Lean (Lawrence of Arabia), and Andrei Tarkovsky (The Stalker).
Were you familiar with the legend of 后羿 (Hou Yi) and 嫦娥 (Chang’e) beforehand?
Ages ago my grandmothers were great story tellers. They were the transmitters with tales about the lady occupying bright moon. And only now realising moon was a reference to Chang’e – and how there was a man, in pursuit, landed her on the moon. At the various times there were no references to any names and it is only now that I assume Hou Yi/Chang’e. So that is my foreknowledge of the legend. And it is great that my grandmothers’ story tellings are coming to life.
What sparked your interest in the project?
A call from our illustrious director Nicole [Pingon] came, if I was interested in attending a meeting re an upcoming project. At and witnessing with mini-participating, at what eventuated in a multi-attendee group Creative Development No 1, I was hooked and invited later on to join Little Eggs.
Describe the process of creating Moon Rabbit Rising. What were the most enjoyable and most challenging aspects of the development?
The whole developmental process has been an absolute joy. As the new-kid-on-the-block this old fart felt very privileged to be working in the company of such a wonderful group of warm friendly young people. Their output had me inspiredly tongue-tied and many moments I could not add to what they had already spelt out.
Little Eggs Collective are known for their unique approach to theatre-making through movement and group devising. Were you familiar with these techniques?
The techniques were familiar to a small extent but the freedom given gave way to very welcome fresh experiences and music components via Christine [Pan] was a great discovery that I could actually make a sound.
Why is it important to tell this story now and in Australia? How does Moon Rabbit Rising fit into the wider Australian theatre scene?
There are many other non-European stories around and this is a good intro. It could also bring to mind turmoils there are now happening around the world and that there is nothing new regarding the such. Hou Yi/Chang’e presented in theatre is a new adventure with so much potential with cultural expositions like languages, arts, fashions etc.
What do you hope audiences will take away from the show?
It may inspire those who will have now seen the show to delve and explore the MRR-as-a-WHOLE trajectory and be happily rewarded with new discoveries of whatever surrounds (us).
NOTE: Responses have been edited for clarity.
Moon Rabbit Rising is running at Belvoir’s 25A Downstairs Theatre from June 29th – July 10th
For more information and tickets, visit here.
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