Tartuffe | Bell Shakespeare

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Every now and again there is a production which stumbles into the light, into the expectant eyes, minds, hearts of an audience and explodes with such intelligence, rigor and joy that it is irrepressible. The audience squeals and hums with delight, the box office is exhausted and the artists have that warm, nourished glow of knowing that the work will sit as an ultimate touchstone of true delights in their wide reaching careers.

Peter Evans’ production of Justin Fleming’s re-penning of Tartuffe is one such production. Read more

“Hey. We’ve gotta talk about this” | Issues in/with new writing

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“Write what you know.”

The first rule of thumb for anyone interested in writing anything. This applies to birthday cards right through to grand epic fictions or a boutique thesis on an obscure historical peccadillo.

It is rapidly followed by the next question:
“What do you know?”

And then swiftly after that,
“How do you know that?”

And then:
“Who are you to write that anyway?” Read more

The Composer Is Dead | Sydney Opera House

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Children’s content is possibly the most important content in the world – films, music, theatre can create a moral, personal, ethical compass for a child beyond their familial and educational realm. The experience can set up a child for life – or cure it of ever wanting to spend time in or near a theatre. It is particularly difficult as society emerges with children and babies being more photographed and publicly “shared” via facebook and other mediums – than ever before in history. Read more

Mojo | Sydney Theatre Company

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Dragging my feet like a reluctant school child. I’ve been on the verge of writing so many times and yet prioritized everything above this task. It’s a fear of mine – deep and dark and quiet, cruel and steady, so casual in it’s proliferation – apathy.

I dread apathy. I fear complacency. I feel compelled to guard against it. I sometimes feel the righteous burn of wanting to rid it from those around me who weakly concede “but that’s how the system works,” or “that’s just how it is.” We lack imagination and ambition with that line of thinking and I can’t help but feel the deep need to build on the legacy of what has got us this far: the vision, bravery and fortitude to do something new, something better. Read more

Writing Bad | Australian Plays and the Critical Conversation

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I’m not a journalist. I’m not an academic. I’m not a lawyer.

I’m an artist.

I’m an artist who has sat in a very weird place in the Australian theatre landscape somewhere between producer and critic, emerging and established, between fan and assessor, audient and philanthropist, administrator and promoter. It’s not due to a lack of rigor – or ability to commit to one thing. My attention is not diluted nor compromised because of my sprawling embrace of all things art and culture. In fact, it’s intensified. There is little else I could imagine that could exercise my heart, my mind so intensely and so perfectly. Read more

A Hunger Suite | Clockfire Theatre Company

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As a teenage girl, Kafka’s A Hunger Artist was a story I read and re-read. This would only seem strange, I suppose, if it was true that Teenagers are NOT the most philosophical (and existentially angsty) humans on earth… and if I didn’t grow up in a small town which I despised for being small and a town. Reading was a consolation. Reading Kafka even more so. I could have spent a lot more of my time flirting with and then dodging teenage pregnancy, but instead I was reading A Hunger Artist, and thinking about the tragic cruel truth behind Kafka’s portrait of the fickle, skeptical general public. If you wasted your childhood in more interesting/sexy ways, perhaps you’d like to read the story here: https://records.viu.ca/~Johnstoi/kafka/hungerartist.htm
(Though NOT reading it will in no way prevent your curiosity in Clockfire Theatre Company’s latest offering: A Hunger Suite) Read more

Amanda | Old Monk Productions

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Writing a play is hugely difficult. Directing a new play is hugely difficult. Producing a new play is hugely difficult. I can not express ebough how highly I regard playwrights, directors and producers of new work. For me it is the ultimate test of a person - involving a sense of bravery, commitment, focus, finance which is not required from those who are trotting out the tried and true. It is in the new work realm that culture is defined, expressed and sometimes where an artform can take its greatest leap forward. It is for this reason that I have (since 2008) referred to new play production as an "extreme sport." Read more

Eight Gigabytes of Hardcore Pornography | Griffin Theatre Company

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Shag pile, shag pile everywhere – even climbing up the walls.

And just as well, too. I need somewhere soft to lean into, while sitting in the dark breathing in the words of Declan Greene’s Max Afford Playwright’s Award winning play premiering at Griffin Theatre Company – the provocatively titled “Eight Gigabytes of Hardcore Pornography.”

The Internet.

The latest in a string of many human lead historic revolutions – following the mechanical and the sexual – to improve and yet collapse the world as we knew it in the same moment. Read more

Inner Garden | De Quincey Co

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That familiar twist and turn of the road, pitted with holes and crumbling bitumen – I’d look up more at the arcing trees if the twists and turns and the potholes in the road didn’t keep my eyes wide, and darting about – Callan Park.

Callan Park. Previously a meeting site for the Eora Nation, looking over the harbour, now houses so many people, so much potential so many pursuits. Usually I find myself lost on this greenspace’n’ gravel headed to The NSW Writers Centre, or wandering into sandstone buildings with red wine and stained shoes looking at graduate art from Sydney College of the Arts, previously I had been helping a Canadian punk band find their way to The Laneway Festival. On this occasion, for Inner Garden, I was anticipating the new work by Bodyweather practitioner, aesthetic adventurer and performance maker Tess De Quincey. Read more

Interplay | Sydney Dance Company

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It is rare that I’ll venture from the word-heavy comfort of my true love (text-based theatre) and meander into the muscular flesh-fest of contemporary dance… but I do from time to time. This special occasion is a triptych presented by Sydney Dance Company in their 45th Anniversary Year – two new works and a remounted work from yesteryear.

Not practiced in the language of (nor the world of) dance, I feel fairly limited in my ability to articulate the specific thoughts and experience of watching phrase upon phrase of movement. I watch trying to form a sense of how to articulate a moment or an image – and so watching becomes in part an exercise in writerly craft -a previous example of trying to write about dance (Specifically a SDC show) can be found here: http://augustasupple.com/2012/03/2-one-another-sydney-dance-company/ . To build my dance articulation muscle I’ll continue to exercise because I am not yet sophisticated in my viewing, nor in my language in responding or reviewing dance.

Lucky the Sydney Dance Company is so robust in it’s history and vision, that the likes of a reader and writer like myself could not possibly dint their reputation as I fumble about in the top drawer of my language skills to find something coherent to say. It’s taken me too long to pluck the courage up to say something… but now at least I have.
Just in time for the show to move on from Sydney to a bright horizon. Read more

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Augusta Supple

Sydney-based theatre director, producer and writer. This site is about my long, deep, bright-eyed, ever-hopeful, sometimes difficult, always invigorating, rambunctious, rebellious, dynamic and very personal relationship with Australian Arts and Culture... I reflect on shows, talks, essays, writing, artists that inspire me to say something, and you'll find out what I'm working on, who I'm working with and what inspires me.