Chimerica | New Theatre

Image by Chris Lundie

China is a prominent topic of conversation in Australian media, especially in recent times with shuffling political positioning between China, America, and Taiwan or between China and the Pacific island nations. As close neighbours, Australia likes to keep an eye on China, for better or worse, but we’re not the only ones as the term “Chimerica”, coined in 2006 by historian Niall Ferguson and economist Moritz Schularick to denote the relationship between the United States and China and its impact on global economic and cultural systems, indicates.

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Control | New Theatre

Image by Bob Seary

This review comes from Night Writes guest reviewer Anja Bless

Making its Sydney debut, Control by emerging playwright, Keziah Warner, is a sci-fi show ready to entertain and enthral. Flowing through three different but interconnected stories set sometime in our (not-too distant?) future, Control asks what happens if we don’t pull on the brake of technological development.

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Gods and Little Fishes | New Theatre

Image by Bob Seary

In the Year of Magical Thinking, her memoir about the sudden death of her husband, Joan Didion writes, “Grief turns out to be a place none of us know until we reach it.” Grief is figured as a foreign, unknowable place that welcomes unsuspecting grievers like Frank after tragedy. Frank isn’t sure how he got here or how to get home but he’s slowly piecing together the puzzle of his grief.

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The Merry Wives of Windsor | New Theatre

Image by Bob Seary

While being one of Shakespeare’s less-performed plays, the Merry Wives of Windsor uses many of his classic theatrical elements including disguises, revenge plots, arranged marriages, and plenty of innuendo. With recognisable characters and plot points from other Shakespearean comedies, this rendition also aligns the script with equally recognisable comedy tropes from an Australian context to add extra dimension to the raunch and gossip.

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The Spook | New Theatre

Image by Bob Seary

The Cold War was a time of great paranoia with international powers Russia, China, the US, and the UK all vying for political and ideological dominance. In Australia, growing suspicions about communism meant a ramping up of national intelligence and ASIO surveillance of everyone, including everyday Australian citizens.

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Breaking the Code | New Theatre

Image by Bob Seary

It is painfully ironic, or perhaps just painfully familiar, that not two weeks out from the kick-off of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, the Australian government was debating whether or not to legalise discriminating against trans people in schools. It was a pertinent, if backwards, reminder of the way LGBTQIA+ people’s lives are violently shaped by systemic oppression and unfeeling legislation. Breaking the Code demonstrates how very little can protect someone from legalised bigotry.

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The Lovely Bones | New Theatre

Image by Bob Seary

In 1973, a few weeks before Christmas, 14-year-old Susie Salmon goes missing when walking home from school. She’s been murdered by her neighbour and now she watches on from Heaven as her community pieces together the last day of her life and learns to navigate the future without her. Adapted from the 2002 international best selling novel by Alice Sebold, the Lovely Bones is about living and loving with grief.

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Significant Other | New Theatre

Image by Bob Seary

We are conditioned to want, or even expect, the fairytale romance culminating in marriage and a happily ever after with kids. Whether it’s romcoms, social norms, or capitalism, the pressure to fulfil these expectations is enormous. For some it’s a matter of casting off that narrative and seeking something else but what if you do want the fairytale and you just can’t get it?

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The Removalists | New Theatre

Image by Bob Seary for New Theatre

A woman turns to the police for assistance when her husband assaults her. The police take the opportunity to puff their chests and wield their power. David Williamson’s the Removalists is exemplary of the playwright’s successes and shortcomings in a brutal, violent exploration of power and toxic masculinity.

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Glengarry Glen Ross | New Theatre

Image by Chris Lundie

It’s the 80s and the air is thick with money; the promise of endless American economic growth just recently cut down by a recession. But the greed is still palpable and it’s gaining momentum amongst the desperate Chicago real estate agents of David Mamet’s imagination.

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