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Finding Murdoch - Written by Margot McRae

FINDING MURDOCH Written by Margot McRae

Directed by Geraldine Brophy

16 JUNE - 14 JULY

A story of two halves

An intriguing world premiere kicks off at Downstage about the infamous ex-All Black Keith Murdoch and the woman who managed to hunt him down.

Finding Murdoch is ex-journalist Margot McRae's account of the media storm and controversy that engulfed sporting legend Keith Murdoch when in 1972 he became the first and only All Black ever expelled from the team.

In a notorious late-night incident Murdoch punched a security guard in a Welsh bar just hours after scoring the All Blacks only try in their victory over Wales. Murdoch was sent home in disgrace from the tour by All Black management, reputedly under pressure from the rugby union.

Avoiding the media maelstrom laying in wait for him in NZ, Murdoch went into hiding, quitting his home and his sport and moving to the Australian outback where he has lived ever since.

In 1990 McRae, then working on the rugby series 'Mud and Glory', tracked Murdoch down in rural Queensland and was able to speak to Murdoch for 45 minutes. "I tried to get as much information out of him as I could, which was like getting blood from a stone," says McRae "But he was absolutely affable and pleasant. He was very happy in himself, it seemed to me."

"Meeting Murdoch had quite an effect on me", McRae adds "It was the need to tell his story and to also express my increasing disillusionment with the direction of television that propelled me to write the play. I wanted to describe the process of getting a story and the toll it can take on people."

Finding Murdoch is the witty, moving and topical account of McRae's search for the All Black legend, how far the media will go to get a story and how the real people behind the photos and the stories are affected.

The Finding Murdoch line-up

The season lineup includes Paul McLaughlin (as the 'mystery man of rugby' himself), Simon Vincent, Alistair Browning, Jed Brophy, Julian Wilson and Steven Ray; the coach for the series is Geraldine Brophy (Flagons and Foxtrots, Confessions of a Chocoholic) and chief reporter is Danielle Mason.

Performance Times Monday - Thursday 6.30pm Friday & Saturday 8pm $20 shows Fri 15 June & Tue 19 June Matinees Sat 30 Jun 2pm, 7, 14 Jul 2pm

FREE Post Show Talkback Monday 18 June

Tickets Premium $39 Premium concession/groups 8+ $30 Members $29 Students $28/$18 2hr standby Preview $20 School parties/Children under 12 yrs $10 per person

ENDS

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