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Theatre students present plays to public


10 August 2006

Theatre students present plays to public

Victoria University theatre students are about to get a taste of what it’s like to see their directing work on the stage.

Students from the THEA304 Directing course will present Caged Birds: an evening of short plays between Wednesday 16 August and Saturday 19 August as part of a final assessment. Caged Birds is season one of four seasons of student productions, with the other seasons running over the rest of the trimester.

The productions consist of a mix of three contemporary and classic short plays. Chook Chook, written by Fiona Farrell and directed by Ingrid Berry, is a comedy about four hen-women ‘neighbours’ in a battery farm looking at the oppressive effects of corporations on both hens and humans.

The Boor, Anton Chekhov’s classic farce, is directed by Vanessa Locke. This comedy focuses on the relationship between the fiery lovers Grigory and Yelena, and is underscored by Chekhov’s examination of the rigid codes of behaviour in nineteenth-century Russian society.

The final production in the season, Consuming Vanessa, an examination of the survival of a woman as her world crumbles around her, is written by New Zealander Kate Morris and directed by Robbie Ellis.

Event Co-ordinator Lee Barry says the productions are a valuable experience for all the students. “It’s an excellent way for them to experience something close to a professional production situation, and apply these skills and experience in the industry. Several past students have remounted their works for the Fringe Festival at Bats or other theatres.”

Twelve short plays are produced over the 12 weeks of the second trimester, with the productions being the culmination of their degree for most students. “It’s a tight production schedule,” says Ms Barry. “As the big end-of-year assessment, it’s a lot of pressure and a huge commitment in terms of time and responsibility. For most it will be first time they have assumed a directorial role for a public performance piece.”

Caged Birds will be performed at Studio 77, 77 Fairlie Terrace. Shows start at 7pm each night, with tickets $12 waged, $8 unwaged.


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