Chal­leng­ing views of me­dia

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Weekly Life -

McNeill’s time as a for­eign cor­re­spon­dent.

The work has ori­gins in Perth Theatre Com­pany’s 2013 Oper­a­tionZe­bra, which ran in a 20minute loop and was view­able from the street through shop win­dows.

Now the piece has been ex­panded to in­clude a nar­ra­tive with two core sto­ries and stars orig­i­nal per­former Mikala Westall and per­former/singer Mei Saraswati.

“It’s about the young women, in their own world, who have their own hopes and dreams,” Saraswati said. “It’s re­ally in­ter­est­ing that Mel de­cided to make a piece with th­ese sto­ries.

“I love when some­one feels and cares so strongly about some­thing that’s hap­pened on the other side of the world.

“I think it has a lot of heart and shows she has a lot of heart. It’s what art should aim to be.”

Westall said the work was not a tra­di­tional piece of theatre and loved its di­vi­sive and chal­leng­ing na­ture.

“If I was an au­di­ence mem­ber I would def­i­nitely leave the show as­sess­ing the way that I view the me­dia,” Westall said. “And that’s not just be­ing aware of how the me­dia presents things, but also how you sit and watch it.

“How you can change a chan­nel at any mo­ment and watch things in lit­tle grabs.”

Westall said FromtheRub­ble delved deep to cut through our grow­ing non­cha­lance to dis­turb­ing news sto­ries.

“It’s like ev­ery time you read a story, it has to keep get­ting big­ger and big­ger to grab your at­ten­tion,” she said.

“Whereas in theatre, the sto­ries we’re telling are hor­ri­ble and hor­rific but they’re also per­sonal and hu­man, and about what hap­pens to a fam­ily – how does this per­son feel about this and how would you feel about this – so it’s more pro­found.”

The From the Rub­ble team also in­cludes Ira­nian Aus­tralian per­former Tina Torabi, PTC writer-in-res­i­dence and as­sis­tant direc­tor Ian Sin­clair, com­poser Joe Lui and au­dio vis­ual designer Mia Holton.

“It’s got to the point a few times where we’ve thought that it’s such a huge sub­ject, do we have a right to talk about it?” Westall said.

“We can’t tell ev­ery­thing, but what we do talk about we do well, and hope­fully peo­ple will re­spond to that.”

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie­mu­ni­ d434200

Mikala Westall and Mei Saraswati star in From the Rub­ble.

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