Australasian Drama Studies

Australasian Drama Studies is a magazine focusing on Arts

Articles from No. 60, April

Ads at Thirty: Three Decades of Australasian Drama, Theatre, Performance and Scholarly Research
Australasian Drama Studies was first published in October 1982, so this year, 2012, it celebrates its thirtieth birthday with this, its sixtieth issue. To celebrate this milestone, we decided to ask some Australasian theatre scholars - a couple of old...
A Great Show-Family Business: Circus and Edgley International
This article describes the history of the Edgley family business in relation to its circus productions and the contribution of key female family members.1 Michael Edgley International (Edgley's)2 Is an Australian entertainment company that toured productions...
Archiving New Zealand Theatre: Tadb, the Theatre Aotearoa Database
When I arrived in New Zealand in 1981, it quickly became apparent to me that it would be useful to archive theatre-related clippings as they came to hand: primarily reviews, listings, newspaper and magazine articles and news snippets from around the...
Aristophanes: Lysistrata, the Women's Festival and Frogs
ARISTOPHANES: LYSISTRATA, THE WOMEN'S FESTIVAL AND FROGS, TRANSLATED AND WITH THEATRICAL COMMENTARIES BY MICHAEL EWANS (NORMAN, OKI OKLAHOMA UNIVERSITY PRESS, 2010)In this new translation of three comedies by Aristophanes, with Introduction and Theatrical...
Artistic Vibrancy among Australia's Five Major Dance Companies
BACKGROUNDThis article is an expanded version of a paper commissioned by the Australia Council for the Arts in 2009 and published online in 2010. For several years, the Council devoted considerable resources to implementing the recommendations of the...
'Celebrated Executioner[s]': Shakespearean Oratory and Space in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Colonial Australia
Examining Australian colonial re-readlngs of Shakespearean texts outside the formal realm of theatre productions offers a fascinating insight into the multiplicity of Victorian revisions and responses to Shakespeare as a literary form throughout the...
Different Kinds of Doubling: Comparing Some Uses of Character Doubling in the Ghosts Trilogy, by Janis Balodis, and the Captive, by Ben Ellis
Character doubling has a contested provenance in theatre studies. On the one hand, it has been identified as a way to subvert naturalisation of socialised roles, foregrounding the performativity that scholars such as Judith Butler have identified as...
Editorial Note
With this sixtieth issue of Australasian Drama Studies, the journal celebrates its thirtieth birthday, having been published continuously since its first issue in October 1982. To commemorate this event, we invited a small group of Australasian theatre...
From Attack towards Absolution: Bruce Mason's Early Plays
Following wartime service in the Navy, and four post-war years in London, Bruce Mason returned to New Zealand in 1951 and began working with the determinedly socialist Unity Theatre in Wellington. At the beginning of his career, Mason - now regarded...
Making the Improbable Inevitable: A History of the Malthouse Theatre
At 2.15 a.m. on 7 February 1984, fire broke out in the Playbox Theatre on Exhibition Street in Melbourne, tearing through the downstairs theatre and damaging the smaller upstairs theatre and offices. That night there had been reports from the theatre's...
Midnight in Moscow
DEAN PARKER, MIDNIGHT IN MOSCOW (WELLINGTON: STEELE ROBERTS, 2011)Dean Parker's play Midnight in Moscow has the distinction of having had the shortest run of any mainstream play in New Zealand theatre history. Two days into its season at the Court Theatre,...
My Body Taught Me How to Act: Towards an Epistemology of Actor Learning and Apprenticeship
My body was remembering my father ...ANONYMOUS DANCER2The actors must be carried along by their physical intelligence; it is the entire body which does the thinking and these thoughts are already actions, reactions.EU6ENI0 BARBA3The inception of this...
No. 8 Wire: 8 Plays/8 Decades
DAVID O'DONNELL (ED.), NO. 8 WIRE: 8 PLAYS/8 DECADES, NEW ZEALAND PLAY SERIES (WELLINGTON! PLAYMARKET, 2011)Since 2007, Playmarket has promoted theatre with the New Zealand Play Series. The most recent publication is the second anthology, No. 8 Wire,...
Ours as We Play It: Australia Plays Shakespeare
KATE FLAHERTY, OURS AS WE PLAY IT: AUSTRALIA PLAYS SHAKESPEARE (PERTH: UNIVERSITY OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA PUBLISHING, 2011)Performing Shakespeare in Australia has always meant more to the artists and audiences involved than just putting on a good play....
Performance and Technology: Practices of Virtual Embodiment and Interactivity
SUSAN BROADHURST AND JOSEPHINE MACHON (EDS), PERFORMANCE AND TECHNOLOGY: PRACTICES OF VIRTUAL EMBODIMENT AND INTERACTIVITY (PALGRAVE MACMILLAN, 2011)Originally published in hardback in 2006, this absorbing volume contains a wide range of essays on performance...
Radical Visions 1968-2008: The Impact of the Sixties on Australian Drama
DENISE VARNEY, RADICAL VISIONS 1968-2008: THE IMPACT OF THE SIXTIES ON AUSTRALIAN DRAMA (AMSTERDAM AND NEW YORK: RODOPI, 2011)In just under three hundred pages, Denise Varney examines the work of six prominent Australian playwrights, all somehow affiliated...
Robert Lord's New York: Big and Small, Notes on Life and Art
Last year I lived in expatriate New Zealand playwright Robert Lord's New York, just a few blocks - and nearly two decades - from his apartment on 85th and Broadway. I'd make frequent visits to Lord's favourite delicatessen, Zabar's, the Upper West Side's...
Staging Virtual Worlds
INTRODUCTIONLive performance is making increasing use of digital technologies.1 Sporting events, rock concerts and stage performance are all becoming synonymous with high production values based largely on advances in technology. Theatre has been steadily...
The Early Sydney Theatre Revisited: A Recently Discovered Playbill for 30 July 1796
In 2007, through the generosity of the Canadian Government, the National Library of Australia acquired a Sydney Theatre playbill dated 30 July 1796 (see Figure 1). It is the earliest playbill to have been located from that theatre, though a playbill...
Transfigured Stages: Major Practitioners and Theatre Aesthetics in Australia
MARGARET HAMILTON, TRANSFIGURED STAGES: MAJOR PRACTITIONERS AND THEATRE AESTHETICS IN AUSTRALIA (AMSTERDAM AND NEW YORK! RODOPI, 2011)Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart famously described his threshold for pornography saying ? know it when I see it'....
Transiting through the Cultures of Suburbia: How Theatreworks Discovered the Community of an Audience
THEATREWORKS AND THE COMMUNITY THEATRE MOVEMENTOn 23 February 1981, an ensemble of recent graduates from the Victorian College of the Arts Drama School - Caz Howard, Peter Sommerfeld, Susie Fraser, Hannie Rayson and Peter Finlay - incorporated themselves...
Unearthing the Bunyip: Clues to the Representation of Australian Identity, 1916-1925
In this article, I examine the partial, 'unearthed' remains of 'the first fully fledged Australian pantomime',1 The Bunyip, Or, The Enchantment of Fairy Princess Wattle Blossom, produced by Sir Benjamin Fuller and his brother John; I trace its production...
Voices Unheard: The Representation of Australian Aborigines by Left-Wing Playwrights 1940s-1960s
There has been a wealth of plays by Indigenous Australians over the last forty or more years. However, there are some plays not necessarily by, but about, Aborigines, that predate this recent phenomenon by several decades. These plays were by left- wing...
'What Is to Count as Knowledge': The Evolving Directing Programme at the National Institute of Dramatic Art
At the 2010 Australasian Association for Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies (ADSA) Conference, held at the Australian National University, staff and students from the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) presented some of their work for the...