This powerful and contemporary Indigenous play penned by Australian playwright Jane Harrison and presented by Moogahlin Performing Arts focuses on three generations of indigenous women, against the backdrop of the Queen’s visit to Australia in 1954.
Actress Dalara Williams who plays the role of Gladys explained that the play details how this family handles the situation of what was happening in Australia. “It’s a story about different generations that inspires hope, determination, resilience and is primarily about the battle between these generations.”
There are five performers on stage, but the main focus is on Gladys, as she journeys through life with her teenage daughter Dolly and grandmother Nan Dear. “I enjoy playing Gladys. She is so full of hope and she has this lightness about her. When you initially step into a new play you don’t know who the character is until the second or third week of rehearsals and by that time I realised how lovely Gladys was.”
Studied widely in high schools as part of the English syllabus, this stage-play which inspires the ideology that indigenous and non-indigenous communities can live together if they put their egos aside should appeal to all audiences. “It focuses on three generations, so I think it does cover a wide audience, whether they are indigenous or non-indigenous, and regardless of age because we have certain actors who are representing certain age groups on stage.”
Dalara stressed that it’s very important for audiences to come along and watch this play as indigenous voices are silenced at times in this country. “There are many topics covered which we still face today including housing issues, education and the right for indigenous communities to control their own destinies. On a brighter note, audiences will see the beauty of how we live and how we tell our stories and I think there needs to be more of that.” (MMo)
Aug 10–Sep 1. Darlinghurst Theatre Company, Eternity Playhouse, 39 Burton St. Darlinghurst. $46-$59+b.f. Tickets & Info: www.darlinghursttheatre.com