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In support and celebration of emerging WA talent, Black Swan State Theatre
Company is launching a New Works Festival at this year’s Fringe World.
It will feature a double bill of two world-premiere black comedies performed
by third-year WAAPA actors – Girl Shut Your Mouth by Gita Bezard, and Tonsils
+ Tweezers by Will O’Mahony – along with a series of play readings. Both young
playwrights were chosen from the company’s six-person Emerging Writers Group,
curated each year by Black Swan director Jeffrey Jay Fowler.
“We chose the two plays we felt were ready to be produced and that would have
the most impact on the audience, and the two playwrights who were ready to take
that next step up from the independent scene in Perth,” Jeffrey Jay says.
“I think the reason they’re both black comedies is because it’s what this generation
of theatre makers is into. We have audiences who are thirsty for intellectual stimulation
but also entertainment, and I think a lot of people want to be sure they fulfil those
boxes. Will and Gita both come at the style with a really modern sensibility – it is much
more savage with the audience, using a provocative idea at the core and making light
from the darkness.”
Girl Shut Your Mouth looks at the education of women in the Middle East and how
women are treated in the west, using four teenage girls who are preparing to move
countries – but one of them has been shot in the head.
“There’s a lot of humour based around violence against women, which is really
dangerous territory, but it’s something Gita very confidently strode into with her
writing,” he says.
Tonsils + Tweezers examines “deep grief”, and how we can get caught up in
a past event and never move on.
“Will is an incredible writer, he’s one of WA’s brightest talents,” Jeffrey Jay
says. “Some of the ideas about the value of life he presents in the play are quite
New Works Festival, Studio Underground, State Theatre Centre of WA, Jan 14-Feb 7.
Jeffrey Jay Fowler.
Tonsils + Tweezers.
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