Comedians and magicians thrive on presenting themselves as lone performers in front of an unknown audience. Actors too are adept at one handers, but, what about writers? Debra Oswald, well seasoned writer of plays, Mrs Bailey’s Minder and The Peach Season, as well as being one of the creators of the TV miniseries, The Offspring, is doing just that. Oswald is presenting a one woman show on the joys and perils of writing for theatre and screen in Australia. A gutsy move and an honest one.
Oswald will talk about the self doubt and the anxieties that are part and parcel of being a writer. Mainly the difficulties of getting work noticed by publishers, agents and producers. The rejections which Oswald refers to as the, “ brutal, disheartening damages done to the morale of a writer.” A writer, though, is compelled to write and must find ways to overcome the anxieties in order to take the work all the way.
“Success is worth it. The joys of seeing my work performed far outweighed the pain.”
Oswald first fell in love with the Griffin Theatre at the age of 11 but cannot remember what she saw there. “It was the experience of sitting in the front row and being able to almost touch the actors. I loved everything about it.” So it’s only fitting that her one woman show should be performed on the Griffin stage.
Like so many other artists Oswald despaired a little during COVID but as she explained, “Being an old hand, COVID didn’t really change the rhythm of my life.” In fact it would seem that it has done quite the opposite and created a new kind of energy and optimism for Oswald. The esteemed writer is at this very moment in the process of filming one of her novels, The Family Doctor, for television. Yes she writes novels too. Oswald’s one woman show, an enlightening and humorous storytelling event, however, is all about direct communication with an audience. A chance perhaps to relive the magic of being 11.
Until Apr 24. SBW Stables Theatre, 10 Nimrod St, Darlinghurst. $40+b.f. Tickets & Info: www.griffintheatre.com.au
By Renee Lou Dallow