Kate Cherry has been artistic director of Black Swan Theatre for nine years but is leaving next month to run the National Institute of Dramatic Arts (NIDA) in Sydney. Last night she announced her final Black Swan season for 2017 and the directorial debut at the company of incoming artistic director Clare Watson who was formerly the artistic director of St Martins Youth Arts Centre in Melbourne.
The season includes two world premieres, four WA premieres, two co-productions, an Australian premiere and five plays written by Australian playwrights.
The plays at the Heath Ledger Theatre include Michael Gow’s Once in Royal David’s City, a co-production with Queensland Theatre. It is directed by QT’s artistic director Sam Strong and stars Adam Booth, Penny Everingham, Jason Klarwein, Toni Scanlan, Kaye Stevenson and Steve Turner. Black Swan will present its own production of Joanna Murray-Smith’s Switzerland completing its run of productions in every state theatre company in the country. It stars Jenny Davis as Patricia Highsmith and is directed by Lawrie Cullen-Tait.
The founding artistic director of Black Swan, Andrew Ross will direct Beckett’s Endgame (starring Geoff Kelso, Kelton Pell and George Shevtsov) and Clare Watson will direct the Australian premiere of the Swedish “romantic horror” Let the Right One In starring Ian Michael, Sophia Forrest, Stuart Halusz, Rory O’Keefe and Maitland Schnaars. The play about boy and a vampire is UK writer Jack Thorne’s adaptation of the novel and film by John Ajvide Lindquist. (Main image above by Robert Frith of Sophia Forrest and Ian Michael).
The company’s Studio Underground venue will present Lally Katz’ early play The Eisteddfod (starring Brendan Ewing and Natalie Holmwood and directed by Jeffrey Jay Fowler) as well as American writer Doug Wright’s Tony Award winning I Am My Own Wife based on the true story of German antiquarian Charlotte von Mahlsdor. The one-man play will feature Brendan Hanson in the role of Charlotte and is
directed by Joe Lui.
Black Swan resident writer, Hellie Turner will see her ANZAC themed play The Lighthouse Girl (based on the novels by Dianne Wolfer) have its world premiere. The cast of Daisy Coyle, Benj D’Addario, Murray Dowsett, Nick Maclaine, Alex Malone, Will McNeill and Giuseppe Rotondella will be
directed by Stuart Halusz.
Coma Land by Will O’Mahony features the cast of Humphrey Bower, Amy Mathews and Ben Sutton and is directed by Will O’Mahony. It is described as an “epic tale about pianos, prodigies, penguins and pandas”.