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2003 Productions

What would you do if you found $735,000 of someone else's ill gotten gains in used bank notes and thought the owner had no way of tracing you?

Funny Money

by Ray Cooney
Directed by Wendy Hill
Featuring Tony Girdler, Elaine Hudson, John Keightley, Kim Knuckey, Frank McNamara, Peter Talmacs and Steve Vasquez.

9 January to 1 February 2003

mardi gras at the new

Australian Premiere

Mother Clap's Molly House

by Mark Ravenhill

"Pleasure 'til morning comes! Pleasure 'til Judgement day! Oh yes! Pleasure, pleasure, pleasure! Pleasure ever more!"

Mother Clap's Molly House is an all-singing, all-dancing, all-sodomising extravaganza of a black comedy. Shifting defly between the back streets of London in 1726 and a twenty-first-century Bloomsbury loft, Mark Ravenhill's latest play celebrates the diversity of human sexuality, explores our need to form families, and attacks the ideas of sex as commodity.

Scandalising sections of the traditional audience at London's Royal National Theatre where it premiered in September 2001, Mother Clap's Molly House is now infamous for its onstage acts of vividly simulated sodomy, bawdy songs, and parades of handsome men in clinging underpants. But it combines graphic sexuality with a generosity of spirit - its execution may be specifically homosexual, but its themes are universal. Broadminded straights needn't feel excluded from the fun.

new theatre is proud to present the Australian Premiere of the newest offering from the author of the acclaimed Shopping and Fucking in its ongoing commitment to supporting the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras in Sydney.

8pm Fri/Sat 14 Feb - 8 March (no perf 1 or 2 March)

Lemon Delicious

a tart and tasty cabaret treat 9pm Sun Feb 16, Feb23 and March 2 Tix $15
Moved reading

Killing of sister George

Starring Lyn Collingwood


by Moira Buffini

Moira Buffini's comic drama SILENCE takes us over the brink of a new millennium, where expectations of Armageddon fuel desperate bids for earthly power, eternal salvation and carnal knowledge. Serious stuff.

But as in her most celebrated play, Gabriel, (directed by Kevin Jackson for new theatre in 2002), Buffini demonstrates here a wondrous capacity to interfuse comedy with more lofty concerns. Her work sneaks up on you. It is suddenly illuminating when you least expect it. This is precisely what makes it so good.


It is the year 1002, and the feisty, independent-minded Princess Ymma of Normandy has been exiled by her brother to England where she is to be punished by King Ethelred. But England is beset by Viking raids, and the bed-ridden Ethelred sees in Ymma's arrival an opportunity for strategic alliance. He summons the renowned half-Viking warrior, the Lord of Cumbria, with the purpose of marrying him to Ymma.

But the legendary Lord of Cumbria is dead, and in his place comes the new lord - his fourteen-year old son, Lord Silence. Despite Ymma's protests, the marriage is made. However, the newlyweds conspire to take advantage of an odd circumstance of the marriage, and the freedom afforded by this strange union. They head for Cumbria in the company of Agnés, Ymma's servant, Roger, a priest of dubious faith, and Eadric Longshaft, a sturdy knight and the object of multiple affections.

The dangerous journey from Canterbury plays out in episodes of cross-dressing, pantheistic worship, burgeoning love and truth-inducing mushrooms. Meanwhile Ethelred, roused from his torpor by the realisation that he should have married Ymma himself, pursues them with a murderous army...

Based on true events, Silence manages to be at once comic, dramatic, historical and acerbically political. It intertwines a dazzling array of narrative and thematic strands from the tenth-century Saxon/Viking conflict, across a love triangle involving both voluntary and inadvertent cross-dressing, to the depredations of Ethelred the Unready as he is transformed from an effete figurehead into a coldly zealous butcher.

Buffini's underlying theme is a millennial angst of personal, spiritual and metaphysical yearnings. But Silence also deals with issues of language, gender, religion and war, and raises questions which are still strikingly relevant at the beginning of the third millennium. Is the apocalypse at hand? How do we respond to the threat of foreign invasion? Who is 'God' in a savage world? What are the costs of sexual stereotypes? How should we reconcile religious faith and temptations of the flesh? And, on all of these issues, what are the prompts and prices of silence?

Directed by Michael Briggs
Cast: Kate Cooper, Jack Fairweather, Rob Flanagan,Jodine Muir, Kim Mia Smith, Donald Sword. Set designer: Tom Bannerman. Lighting: Spiros Hristias.

Friday March 21 - Saturday April 12, 2003

Dancing at Lughnasa

by Brian Friel

The Mundy sisters aren't out to change the world ... but they sure as hell can dance!

New Theatre will present Brian Friel's poignant memory play, Dancing at Lughnasa, directed by Louise Fischer.

Dancing at Lughnasa has garnered significant praise since its debut in 1990. It is the winner of three Tony Awards, including Best Play for 1992, and the Outer Critics Award for Best Broadway Play, it was also adapted into an award-winning film in 1998 starring Meryl Streep and directed by Pat O'Connor.

Set in County Donegal in 1936, the play explores the lives of the five Mundy sisters during the summer harvest festival, 'Lughnasa', searching for ways to make sense of their lives. Though well past the age of consent, none of the sisters are married. Kate, a school teacher, is the primary breadwinner and struggles to keep the household together whilst Maggie maintains the house and keeps it well stocked with sarcastic wit. Agnes, quiet and intense, contributes by knitting gloves and keeps a protective eye on her impressionable and special sister, Rose. Only Chris has marriage prospects, she hopes to wed Gerry, the roving father of Michael, her seven-year-old son.

The only other male member of the household is Father Jack, a missionary priest repatriated by his superiors after twenty-five years service in Africa where he developed an interest in paganism. Their tempestuous but loving existence is punctuated by music from the newfangled wireless, nicknamed Marconi because "that was the name emblazoned on the set".

Told in flashback, the adult Michael narrates this story of three weeks in his childhood where the magic of Lughnasa brought his family together. They are blissfully unaware that soon their world will begin to slide towards disintegration. The spirit of life is celebrated when the sisters join with the ritualistic force of an internal music that can no longer be kept silent.

Playwright Brian Friel's work is developed around a central poetic vision that enhances the language of theatre to communicate difficult ideas. In Dancing at Lughnasa, Friel evokes not only the world of a group of human beings trapped in their domestic situation, but the wider landscape, interior and exterior, Christian and pagan, of which they are nonetheless a part.

Dancing at Lughnasa is a complex work, which unfolds with romantic longing, uproarious laughter and bittersweet heartbreak and torment.

Director: Louise Fischer
Cast: Michael Beattie, Marina Kale, Eve Morgan-Dean, Fiona Nash, Dan O'Sullivan, Kath Perry, Steve Sheppard, Cheryl Ward.
Designer: Katja Handt
Lighting Design: Tony Youlden
April 26 - May 24


Music and Lyrics by STEPHEN SONDHEIM


ASSASSINS is based on an idea by Charles Gilbert, Jr.
Playwrights Horizons, Inc. - New York City produced ASSASSINS Off-Broadway in 1990
by arrangement with Hal Leonard Australia Pty Ltd Exclusive agent for Music Theatre International (NY)

Assassins is a one-act musical exploring the dark side of the American dream - those men and women who have attempted - some successfully, to assassinate the President of the United States.

From John Wilkes Booth to Lee Harvey Oswald, composer Stephen Sondheim and writer John Weidman shine a spotlight on the human faces behind the infamy. Sondheim is one of the most influential and accomplished composer/lyricists in Broadway history and has created for Assassins a brillian, melodic score which pastiches American music throughout the ages, from folk to ragtime to 1970's soft rock.

Bold, original, disturbing and alarmingly funny, Assassins reveals the most notorious killers in American history to be not so different from ourselves; reaching for our dreams, looking for love, frustrated with our lives.

Directed by Pete Nettell
Musical Director Steven Stanke

Set Design: Wayne Harris; Costume Design: Tim Elkington and May Lloyd; Lighting Design: Stephen Hawker

Cast: Nathan Carter, Sheena Crouch, John Grinston, Todd Goddard, Rich Knighton, Alice Livingstone, Marcus Rivera, Garth Saville, Daniel Scott, Peter Talmacs, Belinda Wollaston, Rochelle Whyte, Anthony Young and Matt Young.

June 6 to July 5 2003, 8pm Fri-Sat, 5.30pm Sun

Special Event

Sunday 15 June 2003.

A pre-show talk on American History with

The Hon. Bob Carr MP

NSW Premier and Minister for the Arts

The afternoon will consist of a lecture with the Premier, who has a strong interest in American history, followed by afternoon tea and the performance. Arrive 3.30pm for 4pm Lecture, 5.30pm performance.

12th Night Poster by Cheryl Ward new theatre brings an Indian flair to Shakespeare's most popular comedy

Twelfth Night

Directed by Fiona Pulford

Friday 18th July -Saturday 23rd August 2003
Thursdays - Saturdays @ 8pm, Sundays @ 5.30pm
Tickets: $22/$17 Special Deal Thursdays: 2-for-$22
Bookings essential: 02-95193403

The year is 1890. Viola has been shipwrecked in a strange new place - India. Her brother Sebastian is presumed dead. She decides to deal with her grief by disguising herself as a boy and working for the dashing Duke Orsino, whom she promptly falls in love with. The Duke in turn lusts after the Lady Olivia, who becomes infatuated with the boy who is really a girl who comes to woo her on the Duke's behalf.

Add to this mix a household full of madcap relatives and servants and the scene is set for a true comedy of errors in which revelry, disguise, delusion, obsession and true and false love are revealed.

Come with us on a fast paced, intense romp through a sexy new world in this exciting interpretation of one of Shakespeare's best loved comedies. Traditional theatricality is challenged as we see what truly lies beneath the surface of each of the characters that inhabit this fresh Indian world. Drawing on many theatrical influences through to Bollywood musicals and the inspiration of India, nothing and no one is what they seem and anything can and does happen in this delightful bittersweet comedy.

This production contains nudity and sexual references.

Twelfth Night is directed by Fiona Pulford, whose previous directing credits include Happy With Half of My Life (touring show - London, Edinburgh, Perth, Melbourne, Adelaide Fringe Festivals 2001/2002), Les Liaisons Dangereuses (New Theatre, 2001), Write Now! Short Play Readings for the Naked Theatre Company (Old Fitzroy & The Stables, 2001+1999), The Boyfriend (Wenona, 2000), Write Now! Short Play Readings (ATYP, 2000) and The Human Voice (Downstairs Belvoir Street 1999).

Stage Design: Katja Handt
Costume Design: Alice Lau
Lighting Design: Tony Youlden
Cast: Luc Anthony, Coralie Bywater, Jack Fairweather, John Grinston, Gertraud Ingeborg, Paul Lyons, Rohan Maloy, Melissa Martin, Jodine Muir, Nicola Parry, Dilshan Rain, Donald Sword and Steve Vasquez.
Directors (left toright): Luke Rogers, Tamsin Rothschild, Alex Broun, Kate Flaherty.

New Directions 2003

Now in its fourth big year, NEW DIRECTIONS again adds new works, new directors and new energies to New Theatre's strong tradition of relevant and thought-provoking theatre. This year's selection comes from across the globe, including Singapore and Africa, and includes three Australian Premieres.

An exciting eclectic mix, with playwrights from Australia, UK, Singapore and South Africa - covering a wide range of styles - black comedy, in yer face radicalism, Asian magic realism, traditional storytelling, conemporary dramas- exploring the diversity of human relationships, the role of women (as wives, sisters, lovers, artists) cultural disparity, violence in society, post colonialism. The writing is brave, witty vital, confronting, lyrical and bold.

Design: Emma Child
Lighting design: Tony Youlden
  • African Gothic

    by Reza de Wet
    Directed by Tamsin Rothschild(Australian Premiere)

    Tamsin Rothschild makes her directorial debut at New Theatre in Sydney this November with Reza de Wet’s electrifying black comedy, AFRICAN GOTHIC. Born and bred in South Africa, Ms Rothschild has lived in Sydney for the past five and a half years. With over ten years experience both acting and directing, Tamsin has a strong interest in presenting South African plays to Australian theatre audiences. "I have loved this play for many years and I am thrilled that at last I have the opportunity to present it."

    AFRICAN GOTHIC was originally written in Afrikaans by Reza de Wet, who has recently translated the script into English. De Wet is one of the foremost playwrights in South Africa and has won more literary awards than any other South African playwright, including Athol Fugard. Initially performed at the Market Theatre in Johannesburg, AFRICAN GOTHIC has received rave reviews from both within South Africa and theatre audiences worldwide. One critic wrote: "Maybe it is just the tenor of the times we live in, but I couldn’t help feeling that she was writing about a nation as well as a family. It gives the play a sinister resonance and makes it the shrewdest piece of satirical writing we have seen in ages."

    AFRICAN GOTHIC is set on a desolate farm in rural South Africa. The story follows the lives of an orphaned brother and sister who have grown up without parental supervision. They have allowed their farm to fall to ruin by blocking out the outside world and creating a fantasy world in which they live. An officious lawyer visits them and threatens to upset the very existence they have created. The plot unfolds with an edgy dark humour and climaxes with a dramatic twist that has brought audiences to the edge of their seats.

    Ms Rothschild’s interpretation of De Wet’s script remains true to the deeply atmospheric nature of the story without sacrificing the characters humour or truth. The play is performed by Australian actors, but is peppered with South Africanisms and brings fresh perspective and vitality to the often-misrepresented South African culture. Tamsin Rothschild’s original and exciting production has brought South African culture to our doorstep. AFRICAN GOTHIC is a fantastic opportunity to escape and experience a slice of South Africa in downtown Sydney.

    Cast: Maria Carter, Lori Killestyne, Garth Saville, Adam Stewart
    Design: Emma Child. Lighting Desing: Tony Youlden.
    Dates: 7 - 16 November 2003
    Times: Thursday to Saturday at 8pm, Sunday at 5.30pm
    Tickets: All tickets $17
    [Preview Thurs 16 Nov at 8pm - Entry by donation]
  • Skylight

    by David Hare
    Directed by Alex Broun

    Over one freezing London winter’s night, Kyra Hollis is forced to face her past and make decisions that greatly affect her future. A fight to the death or the dawning of salvation? A beautiful, moving and very funny play from the acclaimed writer of The Blue Room.

    29 Aug-7 Sep 2003. 8pm Fri/Sat 5.30pm Sun
    Cast: Jacinta John, Beejan Olfat, Laurence Coy
    Crew: Stage Manager/Sound Operator: Uma Kali Shakti, Assistant Stage Manager: Pauline Trennery, Lighting Operator: Sandra Lam
  • Blasted

    by Sarah Kane
    Directed by Luke Rogers

    Set in a hotel room in Leeds, Ian and Cate’s abusive relationship is overtaken by the terror of a world blown apart. A searing indictment of violence in modern society and the dehumanizing and brutalizing effects of war from one of England’s most controversial and brilliant playwrights. [Warning: some scenes may offend.]

    12 - 21 Sept 2003. 8pm Fri/Sat 5.30pm Sun
    Cast: Janet Chiarabaglio, David Ritchie, David Scott
    Crew: Stage Manager: Rachel Wills, Assistant Stage Manager/Sound Operator: Nandini Ray, Lighting Operator: Olivia Olley.
  • Double Bill
    24 October 2 November 2003
    Thursday – Saturday @ 8pm, Sunday @ 5.30pm
    Tickets are $17each

    (Preview on Thursday 23rd October at 8pm, entry by donation.)

    A Room of One's Own

    by Virginia Woolf
    adapted and Directed by Kate Flaherty(Australian Premiere)

    Kate Flaherty’s new stage adaptation alternates scenes of intimateconversations between two women with fragments from Woolf’s lecture speculating about her sources of inspiration.

    Inspired by the inherently dramatic qualities of the lectures, ROOM OF ONE'SOWN gives theatrical life to the imagined sources of the vibrant narrative,anecdote and self-conflict of Woolf's work.

    KATE FLAHERTY is a Sydney-based actor, writer and director. She has workedand studied in the UK at the University of Leeds, where ROOM OF ONE'S OWNwas first conceived. Directing credits include 'The Importance of BeingEarnest'. Kate teaches drama, and has most recently been teaching Shakespeare at The University of Sydney.

    Cast: Georgina Hinds, Fiona Nash

    and a brand new production of

    Woman in a Tree on A Hill

    by Ovidia Yu
    Directed by Jonathan Lim

    Nora, decides that she needs to spend some time sitting in a tree on a hill,away from her cheating husband Paul; Mrs Noah climbs the crows-nest to escape the mammals (Noah included); the goddess Nu-Wa sits wishing women knew how to take advantage of marriage.

    Nora, Mrs Noah and Nu-Wa - a housewife, a legend and a Chinese deity. Just three of the many women who find themselves up a tree to get away from this,that and the other. Especially the other.

    A quirky poignant comedy by award-winning Singapore playwright Ovidia Yu, weaving east and west into a tapestry of female common sense.

    JONATHAN LIM is a Singaporean-based actor, writer and director, and agraduate of NIDA’s Directing course. Directing credits include 'Rosencrantzand Guildenstern Are Dead', 'The Re-Turn of the Screw', the mandarin play 'A Right Ritual', and 'Two Modern Kyogen' at PACT Theatre. He has just finishedplaying Uncle Freddie in a Singapore production of 'Bent', and is currently adapting Burgess’ 'A Clockwork Orange' for a Singapore theatre company andwriting/directing 'Ghost Stories', a 6-part TV series of South-east Asian ghost tales.

    Cast Includes: Elaine Hudson, Tanya Gallagher, Rae Spratt and Jared Morgan.

Last production for 2003!!!!

The Beauty Queen of Leenane

by Martin McDonagh
Directed by Winston Cooper
Friday 28 November to Sat 13 December 2003.
Classic Series

Moved Playreadings

Each moved reading is rehearsed with an experienced director and was performed on the main stage, using full cast who will be carrying scripts.

$6 Tix (at the door no credit cards) Group discounts for schools


Zoo Story by Edward Albee with The Dumb Waiter by Harold Pinter March 25,26 2003
The Real Inspector Hound by Tom Stoppard April 8,9 2003


The Plough & the stars by Sean O'Casey May 6,7 2003
The Beauty Queen of Leenane by Martin McDonagh May 20,21 2003


Julius Caesar

8pm, July 29,30


Directed by Spiros Hristias
8pm, Aug 12,13



by David Mamet
Directed by Rohan Maloy
8pm, Oct 28,29

Gary's House

by Debra Oswald
Directed by Katrina Smith
8pm, Nov 11,12
The bar in the foyer of the Theatre, 1998.
  • Theatre Address: 542 King St, Newtown, NSW (5 minutes from Newtown Railway Station or bus 422 from Railway Square Sydney)
  • Administration Phone (+612) 9519 3403
  • Administration Fax (+612) 95198958
  • Become a Benefactor -New Theatre is able to receive donations through a listing on the Register of Companies under section 78(1) of the Income Tax Assessment Act of 1936. Donations of $2.00 or more are eligible tax deductions. Donations should be made payable to "New Theatre Fund". Post to The Administrator, New Theatre 542 King St, Newtown NSW 2042. Include name and address for receipt. Enquiries (+612)9519 3403.
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