Stirling Times - - At The Movies -

PERTH the­atre com­pany The Last Great Hunt has never shied away from tack­ling the big is­sues and lat­est play The Talk is no ex­cep­tion.

The sea­son at Su­bi­aco Arts Cen­tre from April 11 to 21 looks at the way adults talk to teens about sex.

Writer and di­rec­tor Gita Bezard, who spends her time work­ing be­tween Perth and Melbourne, said the com­edy was a re­sult of the the­atre com­pany ex­am­in­ing emerg­ing sex­u­al­ity in fe­males.

“Through a se­ries of cir­cum­stances I ended up tak­ing lead of the show,” Bezard said.

“I be­came re­ally in­ter­ested in the way we talk to teenagers about sex, par­tic­u­larly teenage girls, and the way it’s por­trayed in the me­dia and pop cul­ture.

“And also look­ing at what has changed, par­tic­u­larly with the in­ter­net, from even when I was a teenager. There is so much more ac­cess for teenagers to in­for­ma­tion and to pornog­ra­phy which 20 years ago peo­ple didn’t have, but I don’t think we’ve re­ally changed the way we speak about those things. I think we need to change the con­ver­sa­tion to keep up with the in­for­ma­tion.”

Bezard said The Talk fo­cused on 15-year-old Eva, who was not only “dis­cov­er­ing sex but also dis­cov­er­ing her frus­tra­tions around the way peo­ple talk about it”.

“Her school just wants to talk about con­doms but the kids want to talk about hard­core porn, so there’s di­chotomies in the con­ver­sa­tions be­ing had,” she said.

The pro­duc­tion is pre­sented by an all-fe­male cast – Cas­sidy Dunn, Me­gan Hunter and Christina Odam – and is set to a pop sound­track that is on topic.

“I was in­ter­ested in pop mu­sic that is quite ex­plicit and very well-known; how it’s ac­cepted that you’ll be some­where like the su­per­mar­ket and lis­ten­ing to lyrics that are quite graphic, think­ing that’s fine,” Bezard said.

“We’re ex­plor­ing the idea of be­ing sur­rounded by sex and sex­ual lan­guage in the world and what that does to us.

“We have fun with the show, but we also ex­am­ine the se­ri­ous is­sue of how we talk about sex to teenage girls com­pared to boys.

“Why are we busy telling girls not to wear short skirts but not telling boys that no means no? What mes­sages about sex are re­ally be­ing given?”

The Talk is rec­om­mended for ages 14 years and older.

Bezard said she hoped adult au­di­ence mem­bers might think about their will­ing­ness to have that con­ver­sa­tion.

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie

The Talk writer and di­rec­tor Gita Bezard with cast mem­bers (from left) Cas­sidy Dunn, Christina Odam and Me­gan Hunter.

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