Fam­ily drama un­furls

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - SHOWS -

THE Arts Cen­tre Gold Coast hosts a free pub­lic read­ing of Tab­ula Rasa in The Space to­day. Pro­duced by Monette Lee and pre­sented by Pur­ple Pear Pro­duc­tions, Tab­ula Rasa is one of the three works-in-progress for the in­au­gu­ral 2013 In­de­pen­dent Sea­son. Writ­ten in the 1990s by Shella Dun­can and short­listed for the Ge­orge Landed Dann award in 1999, it is as yet un­per­formed, so any fu­ture pro­duc­tion will be a world pre­miere. The ti­tle Tab­ula Rasa means to wipe the slate clean. It is about a fam­ily, mis­com­mu­ni­ca­tions and the en­su­ing drama that af­fects them all. Set on the Sun­shine Coast in the late 1980s, when ho­mo­sex­u­al­ity is still il­le­gal, the story in­volves death, a will, hu­man dis­sat­is­fac­tion, sex­u­al­ity, drug ad­dic­tion, real es­tate and old fam­ily squab­bles. It has four rich, flawed, well-writ­ten char­ac­ters – a mother in her late 60s, her two es­tranged adult chil­dren in their 40s and the male busi­ness part­ner (and lover) of the re­cently de­ceased Dad. All are em­broiled in an at­tempt at some sort of res­o­lu­tion for them­selves or each other af­ter the fu­neral. The piece has been un­der­go­ing res­i­dency/re­hearsals with Steve Gra­tion in the di­rec­tor’s chair and an ex­pe­ri­enced cast led by Val Lehman and Lee as the mother and daugh­ter, Scott Brewer as the drug and yoga ad­dicted son/brother and Steven Tandy as the de­ceased’s part­ner.

The free pub­lic read­ing of Tab­ula Rasa plays The Space, at The Arts Cen­tre Gold Coast, to­day at 4pm.

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