Cast Announcement – Playmates 2020 Super Team

PLAYMATES ILLAWARRA 2020

ONE NIGHT ONLY
Saturday 12th December at 8:00pm
at the Bridge Street Theatre Coniston (Phoenix Theatre)
Limited Seating to ensure a COVID-Safe production
BOOK TICKETS NOW

For the first time in Playmates’ fifteen-year history, only one actor from each group has been put forward to form a Playmates SUPER TEAM, in our annual improvised comedy showcasing unifying the Illawarra’s theatre and performance groups Roo Theatre Company, Wollongong Workshop Theatre, Stanwell Park Arts Theatre, University, Wollongong Comedy and Black Box Productions.

Our six brave performers will play together for love, not for the trophy in a ultimate statement of friendship and cooperation.

Last year’s champions University will retain the trophy they reclaimed in the controversial 2019 Grand Final triumph over Wollongong Comedy. While keeping the trophy another year was music to the ears of University captain Alexander Cuff, not everyone is as happy to not get a change for Playmates redemption.

“It is a travesty, an absolute travesty! The trophy should be parked in the Black Box Vault until the 2021 Playmates. This sort of bullshit could tear the Playmates community apart! Maybe don’t call it the Black Box vault though, that sounds creepy.” – Feargus, WWT.

While Jordan from Roo Theatre is already eyeing off returning Roo Theatre to their former Playmates glory days. “It’s ok, they know they are going to lose it next time. Give them a little longer with the trophy because they probably won’t win it again.”

When asked if he thought it was fair that University retain the trophy, Alex responded “Uni keeping the trophy for another year was always gonna happen; you think we weren’t gonna win this year anyway?”

Lisa from Black Box Productions is especially looking forward to performing alongside the other groups. “I don’t do playmates for the competition, it’s just fun, so I really couldn’t care less about the trophy. That being said, Wollongong Comedy 100% should’ve won last year. Don’t tell Alex I said that though.”

PLAYMATES XV 2020 CAST

ALEXANDER CUFF | UNIVERSITY

Alex was born the day before the original Pokémon games were released, which is nice that such a positive thing came after a major tragedy. He spent the next 24 years disappointing most people he encountered. Here’s to 24 more, because God knows he doesn’t have much longer than that.

ADAM ARMITT | WOLLONGONG COMEDY

Adam Armitt is the longest serving participant in playmates, and arguably the most attractive, he is a regular with in the local comedy and improv scene, helping run teach classes to new improvisors as a part of Rising Arts Productions. Will he prove that those who can’t do, teach? Probably.

LISA OMODEI | BLACK BOX PRODUCTIONS

Lisa likes to collect stamps from Japan. She believes they give her samurai powers. Lisa has been involved in lots of improv with Rising Arts Productions and has been a part of Playmates since 2013.

FEARGUS MANNING| WOLLONGONG WORKSHOP THEATRE

Feargus finds a perverse sense of enjoyment in the sheer terror that comes each time he steps into the improv space. He doesn’t like to think too hard about what that says about him but it probably has something to do with the way in which you need to lean on/plug in to your fellow performers. That dynamic is the central thing he loves about all theatre – holding up your fellow performers/storytellers while they hold you up at exactly the same time.

“Improv gets you to dial this energy up to 11. It makes for a truly wild ride that always carries the risk of a serious crash resulting in mashed egos and dismembered reputations.”

BRYSON GRENFELL | S.P.A.T

Bryson has been good looking for about twenty four years now, with very little else going on. He is a fan of comic books, occasional substance abuse and frequent self abuse (I like to rehearse in the mirror). He loves his girlfriend and walks on the beach.

JORDAN CUNNINGHAM | ROO THEATRE CO.

Jordan is just your typical writer who ends up on stage more than he would like. If he could say “no” more often he probably would be somewhere very different. He enjoys writing and is very good at babbling on when he doesn’t know what to say as that’s how he has made it through his university degree. His humor comes out when he is extremely nervous so this show is going to be natural to him. Jordan aspires to have a sass off with Gordon Ramsay one day.

ONE NIGHT ONLY
Saturday 12th December at 8:00pm
at the Bridge Street Theatre Coniston (Phoenix Theatre)
Limited Seating to ensure a COVID-Safe production
BOOK TICKETS NOW

Black Box Theatre | 2020 Season

Season Banner 2020

Black Box Theatre’s 2020 season kicks off in March with the Pulitzer-Prize winning stage-play PROOF by David Auburn, and will be directed by Luke Berman. On the eve of her twenty-fifth birthday, Catherine, a troubled young woman, has spent years caring for her brilliant but unstable father, a famous mathematician. Now, following his death, she must deal with her own brilliance as well as the doubt of her sanity.

“A touching study in filial devotion, as brilliant people struggle against their fears of madness.” Michael Sommers, New York Times.

Cast: Lisa Omodie (Catherine), Gordon Streek (Robert), Zac Chadwick (Hal), Mel Ringer (Claire)

Our 24 HOUR THEATRE challenge returns again in 2020, and will feature ten short plays that are written overnight, rehearsed and performed the next day – scripts down. Following our sell-out season in 2019, we are expecting another strong showcase.

Our SHORT+SWEET ILLAWARRA festival returns for its third year in the Illawarra, while its big-brother Sydney festival celebrates its nineteenth season. Returning this year will be our Theatre Top-20 season of ten-minute theatre productions, as well as the return of our Film Festival and Cabaret+Comedy showcase following their successful debut in 2019.

If this little festival wasn’t already big enough, we are adding two more programs into the mix, with Short+Sweet Illawarra Dance and Youth-Theatre being launched for the first time in the region.  We will also be adding our own Gala Final Showcase – featuring the best acts from the festival, which is expected to exceed 100 original pieces of theatre, film, comedy and dance.

And as always, to finish the year, will be PLAYMATES ILLAWARRAIllawarrra’s mate-against-mate improvisation showcase featuring six local theatre and entertainment companies. This is the 15th consecutive year Playmates has been staged, with University looking to retain their trophy they won in 2019 in a photo-finish grand final triumph against Wollongong Comedy.

 

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PROOF

Written by David Auburn

Directed by Luke Berman

Starring Lisa Omodei (Catherine), Gordon Streak (Robert),
Zac Chadwick (Hal) and Mel Ringer (Claire)

20 - 28 March 
at the Bridge St Theatre Coniston

 

 

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24 HOUR THEATRE ILLAWARRA

From blank page to the stage – all in 24 hours

30th May
at the Bridge St Theatre Coniston

 

 

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SHORT+SWEET ILLAWARRA

THEATRE | FILM | DANCE | YOUTH | CABARET+COMEDY

The Biggest Little Festival in the World

4th September - 10th October
at the Bridge St Theatre Coniston

 

 

 

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PLAYMATES ILLAWARRA XV

Illawarra’s mate-against-mate improvisation showcase

November
City Diggers Club Wollongong

 

 

 

Meet the Wollongong Comedy Team | Playmates Illawarra 2019

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7:30pm  Friday 6th December
City Diggers Club, Burelli Street Wollongong

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Meet the Wollongong Comedy Team

No team has been hungrier for the trophy than Wollongong Comedy, not since SPATs inaugural Grand Final victory on our ten-year anniversary. This year, the pressure is on – Wollongong Comedy head honcho Stu MacPherson has gone with a lethal line-up featuring Adam Armitt, Jen Guerrieri-Cortesi, Lisa Omodei and Jarrod Riesinger.

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But no matter how strong the team is, Wollongong Comedy has had a love-hate relationship with our Playmates judging panel.

Luke: Which of the other teams do you think are your biggest threat?

Adam: Just like every year, it’s the judges.

Jen: Yep. “Team Judges”. Too much history there.

Jarrod: Yeah, our team is cursed with both devilishly good looks and the inability to win Playmates.

Luke: What’s your favourite thing about improv?

Jarrod: Crushing the University team.

Jen: I love performing with people I know and love and trust, and meeting new people and seeing their skills develop. Also hearing the audience react instantaneously.

Jarrod: Yeah, and as cheesy as it sounds, it’s the camaraderie. Most of my favourite memories and stories are from improv or with people I perform improv with often. It’s very hard to find something that will bring people closer together than creating something together. Add an element of spontaneity and you have fantastic failures, hilarious embarrassing moments and some really empowering accomplishments; sometimes all in the one scene. I think that’s something only improv can achieve. Speaking of, crushing the Uni team is something only Wollongong Comedy can achieve.

Adam: My Team is hilarious.

Luke: You just won the lotto. What do you do with the cash?

Adam: How much are we talking? Scratchy probably a party, 20-mil definitely a party.

Jen: Pay off my week old mortgage, lots of travel. Buy puppies. Buy a zoo.

Jarrod: Buy a theatre and do a shitload of improv. Also, Disney World. Maybe buy Disney World and turn it into an improv theatre.

Luke: You have a chance to perform in front of a famous person, living or dead. Who, and why?

Adam: President Trump.

Luke: President Trump?

Adam: Yeah, but he’d be dead.

Jarrod: It’s a tie between Wollongong’s resident hunky and hilarious comedian Adam Armitt or Del Close at the peak of his ‘Del Close-ness’. Both seem like they’d be a party to perform in front of!

Jen: Can’t go past Improv Royalty in the form of Wayne Brady, Colin Mochrie and Ryan Stiles but I would need a strong glass of liquid courage beforehand.

Luke: Why should people come to Playmates?

Jen: It’s celebrating local theatre and comedians and actors in this friendly, not crazy intimidating way. We have no idea what’s going to happen, neither do you. But we need your suggestions to get there. It’s a fun night of laughs and just something different from plonking on the couch.

Jarrod: To watch Alex Cuff cry when he doesn’t win two years in a row. It’s also a great testament of the talent the Illawarra performing arts scene has. Most companies, whether directly or indirectly, are represented in some way and that is something that should be celebrated.

Adam: Because we are creating a unique experience for the audience and performers. There’s nothing quite like Playmates.

Meet the Roo Theatre Team

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Meet the Roo Theatre Team

We are proud to introduce the team from Playmates founding members Roo Theatre. The team from Shellharbour are fired up ready for their 14th consecutive Playmates and are chasing their third Playmates victory.

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ROO THEATRE 2019 TEAM

Dylan Horvat (Captain)
Alex Groombridge
James Turnbull
Kelly Nicholson

 

Playmates Executive Producer Luke Berman interviewed the team, check out what they had to say!


Luke: How much do you love Playmates?

Dylan:   Enough for it to be my 5th Playmates that I’ve participated in, captaining the Roo Theatre team every time.

James: How many grains of sand are there on the beach?

Alex: With all my heart, which I’ll admit is tiny, but still, it’s all of it.

Kelly: A whole lot. Super fun and the bestest of all the times.

 

Why should people come and watch Playmates?

Alex: I’ve checked with the boys in the lab and their research has found that improv comedians are the second sexiest people on earth (the first are whoever the judges are this year). That and I know full well there’s nothing an audience loves more than being part of a show, and there’s no shortage of that in Playmates.

Kelly: Because it’s the kind of show that makes you want to jump up on stage and just play with all the fun people.

Dylan: Audiences always love Playmates, and why wouldn’t they? It’s showcasing 24 hilarious local performers, all getting a turn to make the audience laugh and give them someone to root for.

James: To see the Roo team win.

 

What’s your favourite part of improvisation?

James: There’s a moment in every Playmates where someone really takes a leap of faith with the content of a joke, or the direction of a scene goes somewhere you don’t plan it to go. There’s that one moment where they break character, just for a second, and look at the audience to see if they’re about to laugh, or if this is going to be the most painful five minutes of their life. That fear in their eyes when they look out, that pure, unreserved fear is the best part of improv. Also, Italian accents are hilarious and I love it when people use them in a scene.

Kelly: I agree with James, there’s really something hilarious and amazing about what comes out of a moment of fear and exhilaration.

Alex: I just love making people laugh. It sounds cliché but life can be so stressful, if I can cheer someone up, I’m satisfied.

Dylan: My favourite part is being able to say what I want on stage without the fear of a director reprimanding me for ad libs!

 

Which team poses the biggest threat to your team winning Playmates this year?

Dylan: Probably the Uni team because they said they’re going to win. Or Workshop because they said they’ll keep it

Kelly: Workshop Theatre, because it’s my previous team and without me they might win again.

Alex: Hey, there is no team more threatening than Roo! We have the greatest power of all: friendship.

James: Look, our only weakness is we might be too good and the judges will have to give the trophy to another team out of pity. We’re just that good.

 

 

If you won the lottery, what would you do with the cash?

Dylan: Receive it in notably small instalments so I don’t go crazy with power. I mean, those small instalments will still be more than most people make in a year so I still have the most power.

Alex: Fund my rock opera. There’s no joke here, I’d literally just do that.

Kelly: Make a super huge budget feature film and buy my family houses and a big TV to watch said movie.

James: Eat it.

Luke: Eat it? Eat your lotto winnings?

James: Yes.

 

What is your spirit animal and why?

Alex: Wild Turkey. Geddit, cuz its a spirit with an animal as a mascot?

James: Three children stacked together in a trench coat.

Luke: Listen, James –

James: Don’t judge me Berman.

Luke: Kelly, help me out here –

Kelly: Definitely a Cat.

James: I hate cats.

Kelly: Hey, they have wonderful relaxing lives and are awesome in every way!

Dylan: Are there any animals that are good at improv? Because having that as my spirit animal would really help me out.

Luke: Yeah mate, I don’t know if there are animals that do improv…

Dylan: Screw you Berman.

 

Final Words?

Dylan: People should seriously come see it, because it’s a great thing to watch every year. Hell, I watched it every year from 2011 – 2014 and have been acting in it ever since.

Kelly: I’m just so excited, fun times ahead!

James: I will have trained gunmen aimed at the building for anyone who dares give us “zimbabwe” as a prompt. This is your final warning.

Alex: It’s gonna be a bloodbath!

Cast Announcement | Playmates Illawarra 2019

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Playmates Illawarra 2019
Cast Announcement

7:30pm  Friday 6th December
City Diggers Club, Burelli Street Wollongong
Tickets| Facebook Event | Follow on FB

WWT TROPHY 2019

The teams have been locked in, and they are ready to play your favourite Playmates improvised comedy games as well as five new games that will be played using suggestions from our live audience.

Wollongong Workshop Theatre returns as defending champions and will face off against a University team hungry to take back the trophy.

“Uni team will avenge what was taken from us.” – Alex Cuff, Uni Captain

But can the team of comedians finally lift the trophy? Stu Macpherson’s Wollongong Comedy are fielding arguably their strongest team ever, but can they win over the judges? Adam Armitt, team captain, is confident of success this year.

“It’s like a failing marriage, I’m just here for the kids.” Adam, Wollongong Comedy

Playmates foundation companies Roo Theatre and Stanwell Park Arts Theatre (SPAT) return for their 14th year, with Black Box rounding out the six teams on stage Friday night.

 

Playmates Illawarra 2019 Teams:

WOLLONGONG WORKSHOP THEATRE   
Feargus Manning (captain), Dayle Raftery, Bryson Grenfell, Caz Prescott

ROO THEATRE
Dylan Horvat (captain), Alex Groombridge, James Turnbull, Kelly Nicholson

UNIVERSITY
Alexander Cuff (captain), Sam Sweeting, Freya Jarrett, Nathan Steel

SPAT
Shayan Murray (captain), Jordan Cunningham, Abbey McDonald, Maddie Huisman

WOLLONGONG COMEDY
Adam Armitt (captain), Jen Guerrieri-Cortesi, Lisa Omodei, Jarrod Riesinger

BLACK BOX
Emily Cassar (captain), Brandon Fairley, Julian Barry

Preview: Theatre Week 2 | Short+Sweet Illawarra 2019

Theatre-Poster Finish

SHORT+SWEET THEATRE ILLAWARRA

TOP 20 WEEK 2 | PROGRAM B
11-13 October 2019
Bridge Street Theatre Coniston

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE YOUR TICKETS TO WEEK 2
Tickets: Adult $22, Concession/Student $17, Youth (14 and under) $12

It’s amazing what you can do in ten-minutes

Week 2 is the final week of our epic 2019 festival which has featured 65 acts across our Film, Standup Comedy, Cabaret and theatre.

Our final program of ten-minute theatre will be hosted by the winning comedians from our first ever Short+Sweet Illawarra Comedy: Judges Choice winner Diana McLaren (Friday) and Peoples Choice winner Samwise Hemmings (Sunday). Saturday’s performance will be hosted by our Festival Director Luke Berman.

Joining our Illawarra plays are two plays from Sydney and another play from Canberra. Short+Sweet Canberra Festival Director Trevar Chilver presents our Don’t Judge Me while former Short+Sweet Sydney Festival Director Pete Malicki presents Digging Deep. Also joining us from the shire is Rejected and Helpful Anonymous written by Diego Gabriel and directed by the talented Amelia Gilday.

The final performance on Sunday 13th will be followed by the announcement of the two plays that will be invited to perform at Short+Sweet Sydney in 2020 – as well as a special screening of winning films from our inaugural Short+Sweet Illawarra Film Festival Finals.

This Sunday we will be screening:

GIRL TALK (Illawarra)
FUNKY (USA)
TAKE A SEAT (Illawarra)
MUNCHIES (Melbourne)
ROAD TO VAGATOR (Illawarra)

WEEK TWO  PLAYS

RIPPED OFF
Written by Jordan Cunningham (Illawarra)
Directed by Robert Bruce
Cast: Zac Chadwick, Andrew Gobran & Lisa Hughes

The fictional retelling of the true identity of Jack the Ripper.

 

VANISHING POINT
Written and Directed by Steen (Illawarra)
Cast: Eryn Williams, Nick Lewis, Laurence Wann & Ethan Thomas
ITC: Phoenix Theatre Company

Four housemates discover that someone has entered their house and they explore why. Bringing them to a sobering realisation that there are people left alone in the world desperate for someone to show they care.

 

COUNCIL OF WAR
Written by Peter Woolf (Sydney)
Directed by Ihake Jones
Cast: Anne Geenen, Maddie Huisman & Shayan Murray

A Bacteria, a Fungi and a Virus walk into a petri dish, and try to settle once and for all: who is the most deadly?

 

DAVID AND MICHELLE
Written by Diana McLaren (Illawarra)
Directed by Jordan Cunningham
Cast: Ryan Edwards, Grace Callaghan, Jonathan Rodway & Rodney Parker

David and Michelle are deeply in love but have obstacles in the way of their being together.

 

DIGGING DEEP
Written and Directed by Pete Malicki (Sydney)
Presented by Beacon Theatre
Cast: Alan Long

Kieran Johanssen thinks life is unfair. His neighbour Mark Grimshaw inherited a bunch of money from his Great Aunt Edna and bought himself a Porsche Boxster. Not that Kieran’s jealous.

 

REJECTED AND HELPFUL ANONYMOUS
Written by Gabriela Diego (Sydney)
Directed by Amelia Gilday (Sydney)
Cast: Shannon Collard, Adam Cook, Alex Fenner, Anthony Ghosn and Alicia Badger.

This quirky comedy shows that even the most helpful people can be rejected. Is it due to bad luck or bad behaviour? Maybe it’s both!

 

MISSED CONNECTIONS
Written by Bradley Ward (Illawarra)
Directed by Bradley Ward & Kaylee Ashton
ITC: Rising Arts Productions
Cast: Kaylee Ashton & Bradley Ward

After connecting through an online ad, a man and a woman meet in person only to realise that they have had a significant misunderstanding in the nature of their rendezvous.

 

THE BEACH
Written by Ashleigh Hook (Auckland, NZ)
Directed by Stacey Wales
Cast: Caitlin Deverey & Michael Emerson

New years on the beach, Holly and Joe test human resilience as they play a game to see how life may have turned out differently if they’d made different decisions.

 

DON’T JUDGE ME
Written and Directed by Trevar Chilver (Canberra)
Cast: Daniel Berthon, Ryan Erlandsen

One wink from Pete, and Mike is smitten, but it’s not all roses…

 

 

Preview: Theatre Week 1 | Short+Sweet Illawarra 2019

Theatre-Poster Finish

SHORT+SWEET THEATRE ILLAWARRA

TOP 20 WEEK 1 | PROGRAM A
27 – 29 September 2019
Bridge Street Theatre Coniston

FESTIVAL TICKETS

It’s amazing what you can do in ten-minutes

Week one of our Top-20 season of ten-minute theatre will feature eleven bite-sized stories performed by local actors from scripts submitted from the Illawarra and around the world.

Week 1 will be hosted by the People’s Choice winning comedian from the Short+Sweet Illawarra Cabaret+Comedy Showcase, and will also feature the judges favourite Cabaret act.

The final performance on Sunday 29th will be followed by the announcement of the two plays that will be invited to perform at Short+Sweet Sydney in 2020 – as well as a special screening of the Judge’s Choice winning films from our inaugural Short+Sweet Illawarra Film Festival Finals.

WEEK ONE  PLAYS

Having the Prawn
Written by Katrina Samaras (Illawarra)
Directed by Bella Whitcher
Cast: Kaylee Ashton, Zac Chadwick & Olivia Harris

In this eternal triangle, two’s company, three’s a crowd – or is it?

Trapped
Written by Barry Wood (UK)
Directed by Annie May Roberts
Cast: Lillian Woods & Matthew Latham

Claire has something shocking to tell her friend, but is it all in her mind, or even someone else’s mind.

The New Improved Fortune Teller
Written by Bernadette Le Mesurier (Illawarra)
Directed by Gabriela Gonzalez
Cast: Anne Geenen, Shayan Murray, Michael Le Mesurier and Gabriela Gonzalez

A young couple’s relationship takes an unexpected turn when they meet a fortune teller with strange new powers. Who wishes to know their future when they’re happy with the way their life is heading?

Ebook Meets Treebook
Written by Rex McGregor (NZ)
Directed by Inga Jon
Cast: Shayan Murray, Dylan Green, Abbey McDonald and Billee Paige Harris

When an eBook tablet is left on a park bench, an old-fashioned paperback comes to the rescue.

The Beach
Written by Ashleigh Hook (Auckland, NZ)
Directed by Stacey Wales
Cast: Caitlin Deverey & Michael Emerson

New years on the beach, Holly and Joe test human resilience as they play a game to see how life may have turned out differently if they’d made different decisions.


For Jeffery
Written by Andy Goldberg (California, USA)
Directed by Patrick Harrison
Cast: Samuel Litvensky & Naoise Champion

Between a man and a woman, a good deed goes unpunished.


2112
Adapted and Directed by Alex Groombridge (Illawarra)
Presented by Red Star Entertainment
Cast: Nathan Edwards, Laura Williams, Bradley Ward, Blake Hoole, Michael Emerson, Ihaka Jones
Band: Dan Osbourne (Guitar), Robbie Cotterell (Guitar), Ruairí Moylan (Bass),  Matthew Bryant (Keys), Harrison Xirocostas (Drums)

Whilst living under a dictatorship, a citizen finds an ancient relic, reigniting a war between planets.


Vanishing Point

Written and Directed by Steen (Illawarra)
Presented by the Phoenix Theatre Company
Cast: Eryn Williams, Nick Lewis, Laurence Wann and Ethan Thomas

Four housemates discover that a ghost has entered their house and they explore why. Bringing them to a sobering realisation that there are people left alone in the world desperate for someone to show they care.


Local Kid
Written by Aubrey Lidden (Southern Highlands, NSW)
Directed by Noah Cegielski
Cast: Samuel Litvensky

A solo performance where young man is brought in for police interrogation for a gang related killing in the community, interacting with unseen interviewers who must make him crack.


More Brains Pleaasseee!!!
Written and Directed by Patrick Kevin Gamble (Illawarra)
Cast: Ricky Gamble & Patrick Gamble

Two zombies contemplate life, as Zombies.


Errr…???

Written by Elden Rhoads (California, USA)
Directed by Zoe Rose
Cast: Laura Williams, Arthur Gallagher

A young couple at a crossroads in their relationship — with nothing left to say, do they break up, or get married?

Short+Sweet Illawarra Film Festival Finalists (Top 20) | 13-14 September 2019

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TOP 20 | FINALS
13 – 14 September 2019
Gala Twin Cinemas, Warrawong

Short+Sweet Illawarra is thrilled at the high standard of short films that were submitted to our inaugural Film Festival. A total of 86 films were submitted from around the world, so many that we have added a second program to our first season – the Wildcards (stay tuned this week for the announcement of our Wildcard Finalists.

Here are our finalists – screening on Friday 13th September and 14th September both at 8:30pm at the Gala Twin Cinemas Warrawong (cinema 2).

 

  ILLAWARRA FILMS

Road to Vagator
Written and Directed by Nick Bolton & Jess Milne
A film by TEN ALPHAS
Cast: Nick Bolton, Sandy Velini

A man is issued a series of challenges, by an unknown person, and left with with no option but to carry them out, taking him from London to Sydney, via Dubai, Mumbai, Goa, Kerala and Hong Kong.  A film by Jess Milne and Nick Bolton, yes just two people, shot on location, in 5 countries on honeymoon, January 2018.

 

Take a Seat
Written and Directed by Jordan Turner
Cast: Jensen Baraldi

The Collector is a young man who has lost himself to his habit, delving deeper and deeper into his fetish for the four-legged until nothing else remains.  Told from an intimate perspective, Take a Seat is an introspective look into an unusual collection and the thoughts that drive the obsession.

 

Girl Talk
Written and Directed by Kelly Nicholson
Cast: Isabelle Fredericks, Lisa Omodei

A woman wakes up in a garage to the most terrifying and awkward moment of her life.

 

Thumbs
Written and Directed by Troy Scott Brough

A black romantic comedy with a twist of red.

 

  AUSTRALIAN FILMS

 

Munchies | Melbourne
Written and Directed by Hayley Warnock

Herbert is pleasantly spending the afternoon in his vegetable garden until he discovers something has been munching on his crops. Surely it can’t be that hard to catch the perpetrator?

Genre: Stop-motion animation.

 

Legacy | Adelaide
Written and Directed by Barry Mitchell
Cast: Eileen Darley, Freya Anthony, Joe Anthony, Lucy Taylor

Children in a cave listen as a woman, who might be their aunty, tells the story of how their ancestors destroyed the world.

 

Waldwölfe (Forest Wolves) | Sydney
Written and Directed by Peter W. Allen
Cast: Lara Deam, Callum Needham, Luke Jacka, Marcus Molyneux

1940s Germany, three Nazi soldiers capture an escaped Jewish woman. But what will they do with her?

Genre: War, Drama, Period

 

Untitled | Robertson, QLD
Written and Directed by Noah Gerometta
Cast: Jack Murphy, Tahlia Jade Holt

An argument arises when a screenwriter discusses his subject matter.

 

Nour | Melbourne
Directed by Suzy Sainovski
Written by John Cunningham
Cast: Taj Aldeeb, Danae Swinburne, Harper Elwyn

A young Syrian girl fleeing the horrors of the civil war suddenly finds herself with more responsibility than she can handle.

 

As We Fall | Sydney
Directed by Jim Winton Porter
Written by Jim Winton Porter, Dante Porter, Hanni Witt
Cast: Jim Winton Porter, Hanni Witt, Dante Porter

A man and a woman share tragedies that bring them together.

 

INTERNATIONAL FILMS

The Proposal  | Ukraine
Written and Directed by Nazar Germanov
Cast: Mauro Canepa, Denise Drago

Young loving couple holds a romantic dinner where Ethan makes an offer to Erin to marry him. This evening will inspire Erin to write a new composition

Genre: Animation

 

Funky  | USA
Written and Directed by Ellis J. Sutton
Cast: Chance Davis, Anngelica , Elle Vernee, Keith Bartley, Nu’Jay, Kristian Emel, Nia Warren

While preparing for the biggest party of the year, Clinton and Jessica take their own funky path by rejecting mainstream music and accepting their own groovy tastes.

 

Unwanted Destiny | Sweden
Written and Directed by Sam Shaahin Doost

 

Paravent  | Egypt
Written and Directed by Fatema Faidallah
Cast: Abdelrahman ali, Abdelrahman essam, Mohamed elsheikh, Marawan Khier Elden, Hassan Abokaram

Paravent represents racism between black and white and it shows how much it can affect someone’s life.

 

Winged Miracle | Azerbaijan
Written and Directed by Zahra Mirrza
Cast: Karam Hadizadeh, Bahruz Vagifoglu, Zahra Mehdizadeh

Azerbaijan, 1937. A poet for Panturkish ideological ideas was arrested. While in prison, he is visited by his daughter with a picture of a bird in a cage.

 

First Date | USA
Directed by D.T. Bullock
Written by Victoria L. Bullock
Cast: Ashleigh Ann Wood, Chris Stein

Adriana has limited communication with the outside world after two years of intensive counseling for her PTSD.  Adriana prepares for a First Date, but will she open the door?

 

The Tomb of the Exhausted | France
Written and Directed by Marion Fernandez
Cast: Karam Hadizadeh, Bahruz Vagifoglu, Zahra Mehdizadeh

 

Coffin Decolleté | Egypt
Written and Directed by Nancy Kamal
Cast: Menna Ashraf

A girl notices wedding preparations in her home. She did not expect to be the bride.

Preview: 24 HOUR THEATRE ILLAWARRA 2019

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Our writers have all created their original scripts, and our ten teams of actors are now busy rehearsing their plays! Congratulations to all our writers for creating some truly amazing short plays, written between 10:30am last night and finishing by 5am this morning.

The plays that will be presented tonight to a full house are:

 

Unclaimed Baggage

Written by Tom Peach (Monologue)

Unclaimed Baggage is a short monologue about a rich young woman called Figtree Saint Clements. On a cruise holiday with her husband Gerald, and several hundred unwashed ordinary people, she has time to think about her life, her loves, and what next.

 

Hollywood Ending

Written by Malika Elizabeth

Three women find themselves in a waiting room. Each has very different wants and desires. Two are old friends. Two are new. All of them are getting ready to do things they’ve never done before. And no, that’s not a kinky synopsis for a porn. It’s about affirming happiness.

 

How We Fall ( fire thatson of a bitch)

Written by Brendan Bate

Buck Dowd is down on his luck. Trouble at home and the daily routine are taking their toll. Thank God Buck has it all sorted out at Acro Industries. His latest report into fellow workman Rami Malouf will certainly see Buck’s star continue to shine in the eyes of his somewhat overbearing boss, Ron.

 

Still Water

Written by Dylan Gee

When Duke Francesco Mozzarella turns up dead the only man to find out who did it is Constable Nimbin of Scotland Yard, a veteran of a thousand street murders. But who killed the duke, was it Sir Stilton; the opium-addicted Dandy, his arch nemesis Lord Wensleydale; Corrupt Cheese Lord of London or was it Stilton’s unassuming French Butler Mr Camembert; ever loyal and polite. What are they all hiding, who smoked what, who did you, maybe you’ll never know, the only way to find out is to watch.

 

Brothers in Law

Written by Alexander Cuff

Richard and Cylus are new partners in the police force, about to interrogate a suspected crime lord. They all have equal claim to be, and to not be, brothers. Who is right, and who is even more wrong?

 

Killer Within

Written by Inga Silfr Jon

In a world of mass influence, how do you find your voice? How do you even begin to segregate the difference between fantasy and reality? Sometimes looking to the roots of learning and existence are the only way to see where we went wrong. At the end of the day there is a fine line between love and hate, and the idiots of the world are that line.

 

There Will Be Lies

Written by Charlotte Cuff

Ekel and Yonda are spies for a secret academy. Despite their extensive training, they are kidnapped whilst on a mission to capture the infamous Juarhala and her recent employee Smephanie. The four women struggle over the contents of a box uncover the lies that have spiralled into the strange entanglement of their lives.

 

A Dirty Job

Written by James Turnbull

A duo of super villains discover the final ingredient to their Immortality Serum in a Russian military base, the mummified penis of Rasputin. However, their bonds are not quite as strong as they seem as more villains appear after the same prize, causing them to question mortality, success and Rasputin’s penis.

 

The Devil’s Dictionary

Written by Diana McLaren

Sam, Jen and Mag are just trying to have a quiet night at home and relax when Georgia wanders in and announces she has killed Charlie. They attempt to help her and understand what happened to various degrees of success. Georgia feels like she’s loosing her mind. She thinks her friends are helping her keep a grip on reality but are they what she really needs?

 

All My Friends Are Dead

Written by David Rienits

Wallace, Charles, Maurice and William are the four members of a group of kids performers. Once upon a time things were going great, but now on the verge of forced retirement, and dealing with a death in the cast, they need to find the energy to begin their last year of production. Battered and bruised, the four put on a happy face and preach a message that they don’t really believe in the form of a new song about a butterfly and how you should always look forward to the future.

Team Captains Interview | 24 Hour Theatre Illawarra 2019

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Black Box Theatre is pleased to announce its ten Team Captains for this Saturday’s 24 Hour Theatre Illawarra. The excitement and intrigue is building, particularly surrounding which of these team captains will be given a monologue to learn and perform in a single day. Our writers will also be looking on with interest, they too will be waiting to see who their team will be, or which of them will be writing the monologue!

24 Hour Theatre Executive Producer Luke Berman recently announced to the cast that this year there will only be one monologue, and the monologue will be performed by a female actress – who will be one of the five female captains announced today.

This year’s team captains are Bradley Ward, Lisa Omodei, Rory Holloway, Sophie Bentley, Nick Lewis, Kaylee Ashton, Andrew Gobran, Stephanie McAuley, Julian Levanic and Kiah Sassall.

Producer Luke Berman interviewed our team captains about what they are looking forward to this weekend.

Why did you want to perform in 24 Hour Theatre?

Kaylee: It is a very unique environment to make theatre under time pressure as short as 24 hours. I believe it would be a beneficial experience to work closely with actors within a time constraint such as this. I also adore the Illawarra Theatre Scene and would love to continue with this awesome project.

Julian: It is a good opportunity to sharpen my wit and hone my skills as an actor. Also, I can tell there is some good fun to be had.

Michaela: I want to open my door again to acting and performing. I have not done in it in such a long time especially having moved interstate. I know many people in the theatre that I would love to reconnect with and I cannot wait to meet and work with new people in the Illawarra.

Sophie: It’s a highlight in my year, and the thrill of putting together a short performance in a day is always a blast.

Andrew: I love performing in the theatre! I love the concept and the excitement and anticipation that doing a play in 24 hours would have.

Rory: 24 Hour Theatre is an awesome opportunity to practice my skills of creating a performance as well as sticking to scripts and learning lines in such a tight time limit. I’m also super looking forward to working in a team that I might not have worked with before. To entertain an audience is always the best part for me.

Nick: I’m always looking for a new challenge, and 24 Hour Theatre is sure to be a wonderful challenge!

Stephanie: After doing it last year, I enjoyed it so much I want to do it again!

Lisa: BECASUE IT’S AMAZING AND I LOVE IT!

Kiah: Because I’m crazy enough to come back for more after participating in the challenge last year.

Brad: 24 Hour Theatre is a thrilling and unique experience, that pushes your skills as an actor in a way that is safe and enjoyable. You either get the opportunity to meet and work with new artists, or to experiment with new roles and forms surrounded by artists you trust.

What would say your greatest strengths are as an actor?

Kaylee: Movement or physical based comedy.

Michaela: I’m a loud, enthusiastic and motivated risk-taker!

Julian: Adaptable, in the sense that I experiment well with my roles. I also take advice and direction well to enhance the effect of my characterisation.

Sophie: Diversity, adaptability. I also can take direction well.

Andrew: I can react and cover on stage to my fellow cast members – which might come in handy if we forget lines for the show! I’m also versatile with the types roles I can play.

Rory: As an actor I hold a great amount of stage presence. Over the years I have developed a great vocal power and resonance and I believe I can hold my own with good comic timing.

Nick: I am driven to succeed and flexible with whatever needs doing.

Lisa: Comedic timing, strong stage presence. Commitment and passion for the work.

Kiah: Greatest strengths? Working with conflict within a scene. Drama, romance, sarcastic characters.

Bradley: I am very quick to learn lines, and am willing to give almost anything a try. I move easily between genres, and am equally comfortable in both drama and comedy. I have a strong voice and stage presence, and do not shy away from experimentation.

If you had a choice, what would you like your writer to write for you?

Kaylee: A religious satire!

Michaela: A play about a fairy who has amnesia.

Julian: I want to play an antagonist, like a psychopath. I’m not a psychopath I promise, but I’d love to give it a go.

Sophie: Something that people are going to remember past that night, and has depth to it.

Andrew: Oh that’s a very tough question! Possibly if it’s a short play one where I’m in a relationship and I have just landed a dream role in Hollywood and the decision of leaving my beautiful girlfriend to follow my dreams or stay with the status quo of a D-grade actor picking up minor roles and working a full-time job.

Nick: A crazy plot about mental health, something exploring gay themes or anything that is totally out there!

Lisa: Probably a comedy, but something with real meaning. Bitter-sweet endings or even something that just moves the audience. Fun but meaningful, ya feel?

Kiah: A meaty, tension filled dramatic role. Facing conflict, struggling to make a decision.

Bradley: Something with the powerful character dynamics of Angels in America; the existential dread and philosophical depth of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead; the witty one liners of The Importance of Being Earnest; the dark avant garde poetry of 4.48 Pyschosis; the social awareness of The Caucasian Chalk Circle; the violent and bloody conclusion of Hamlet; and the killer soundtrack of The Rocky Horror Show.

How confident are you in being able to learn your lines in a day?

Michaela: Very confident. If I can learn all 29 children’s names, their routines, and they’re belongings in a day I believe I’d be very confident learning lines to a short play in a day.

Sophie: I AM CONFIDENT BISHHHHH

Julian: The more time I spend with a script the better. I am usually good at paraphrasing after initial read but to nail it I need to consistently work at the lines with the group as well as by myself.

Kaylee: Very confident in monologues. Alright at conversational lines. I’m pretty confident either way.

Andrew: I am confident in learning lines quickly. I have done a number of acting workshops where they have given us short scripts to learn in an hour.

Kiah: I’m confident enough learning a substantial amount of lines in twelve hours. But give the twenty-page long Cuff script to someone else though please!

Rory: Even in a time limit of 4 months I always take a “close enough” mentality to my lines. I’ll know what they are trying to say and I will usually say something pretty close to that. But I think if I dedicate myself to it for the day I’ll be able to get them down pretty well.

Nick: I’m not too sure as this will be the first time doing it. Here’s hoping!

Stephanie: I’m very confident in learning lines.  I have a really good memory. (Touch wood)

Lisa: I will learn ALL OF THE LINES. Safe to say, I am pretty good.

Bradley: When I was a writer for a previous 24 Hour Theatre, I wrote a 35-minute long play that the actors had to learn. I’m expecting revenge and I’m ready to smash it!

Want to learn more about our captains and the rest of the cast? Catch up on our two cast announcements: Announcement #1 | Announcement #2

Want to learn more about our writers for 24 Hour Theatre? Read our two writer announcements: Announcement #1 | Announcement #2

Haven’t booked your tickets yet? Click here to secure your seat. Don’t delay as tickets are selling fast!

 

24 HOUR THEATRE ILLAWARRA 2019
7:30pm Saturday 11th May
at the Bridge Street Theatre, Coniston

Tickets $22 Adult | $17 Student/Concession
$12 Pensioners & Carers
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24 Hour Theatre is the ultimate theatre challenge for writers and actors. Writers are faced with the harshest of deadlines, a completed and completely original short play is written in the middle of the night which MUST be completed by the morning.

Our teams of actors will start rehearsals in the morning and will have only that day to learn their lines, interpret the vision of the writer, block their play and perform that same evening in front of a live audience.

This is short-form theatre at its frantic best.