Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

The New Summer of the Doll; after Almost 60 Years the Classic Play Makes a Welcome Return to Queensland

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

The New Summer of the Doll; after Almost 60 Years the Classic Play Makes a Welcome Return to Queensland

Article excerpt

ONE of Australia's most famous and pivotal plays, a pillar of Australian theatre and a story which has been lauded for over 50 years a Ray Lawler's classic, Summer of the Seventeenth Doll a will open the Queensland Theatre Company's 2012 season on February 22.

Set in Australia in the 1950s, director Neil Armfield's Doll expresses the nature of happiness, the destruction of idealism and the struggle to accept change, through the story of cane cutters Barney and Roo, who return from Queensland to the Carlton house in Melbourne they share with Nancy and Olive every year, for their annual five-month season of fun and frivolity.

It's been this way for 17 years, with the boys being blokes, and the girls waiting for them a both relationships de facto.

This summer though, after 17 years, it's different.

Barney's 17-year seasonal girlfriend Nancy has gone and gotten married, so Olive ropes in the uptight Pearl as company for him while she and Roo, who is flat broke, realise life has caught up with them and their relationship. Is this really the end?

Starring a superb cast led by Australia's leading lady of the stage Robyn Nevin, Armfield's aDolla is fresh, alert and will speak to each generation in the audience.

Its messages are just as poignant as they were when the play was first performed in Melbourne in 1955, forever changing the landscape of Australian Theatre like no other play before, or since.

aThe Doll is one of the pillars of our national theatre,a said QTC artistic director Wesley Enoch.

aAustralian playwriting came of age with the premiere of this play in 1955, through the story and the characters and the stereotypes, Australia saw itself for the first time on stage; our national identity seemingly crystallised.

aUnder the guiding eye of Neil Armfield, The Doll returns to Brisbane, bringing with her messages just as poignant, just as relevant, just as powerful. …

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