Writers read RealTime

In this second instalment of Writers read RealTime we bring you four more of the actual voices of our contributors reading reviews of favourite works: Ben Brooker, Erin Brannigan, Urszula Dawkins and Zsuzsanna Soboslay.

You’ll find readings by Chris Reid, Gail Priest, Jonathan Marshall and Dan Edwards in Writers read RealTime in the RealTime Audio section of our online archive. The project is curated by Gail Priest who also composed the title score.

Ben Brooker: A rigorous engagement with Asia

Ben Brooker takes you deep inside four works in the 2015 OzAsia Festival, the first under the direction of Artistic Director Joseph Mitchell whose focus on cross-genre and cross-cultural performance and transnational engagement was immediately evident. Audiences live out Indonesian street life with Indonesia’s Teater Garasi, grapple with an overwhelming flow of digital data in Ryoji Ikeda’s Superposition, ponder the metaphysics of the collaboration between Australia’s Dancenorth and Japan’s Batik in Spectra and, raincoated, are awash with water, tofu, seaweed and everyday junk in a “spectacle of self-eviscerating excess” in Miss Revolutionary Idol Berserker from Japan.

RealTime issue #130 Dec-Jan 2015

Top image credit: The Streets, Teater Garasi, photo courtesy the artists and OzAsia 2015


Julie-Anne Long, Kathy Cogill, The Nuns’ Picnic, photo courtesy the artists

Erin Brannigan: Nunsense in Hill End

In 2005 in Hill End, five hours out of Sydney, Erin Brannigan is continually surprised and thrilled by Julie-Anne Long’s The Nun’s Picnic, encountering in the tiny town a flock of nuns (with sexy underwear and travelling to “Like a virgin”), evocations of inner spiritual life and an hilariously provocative, and locally controversial, night-time performance by a stellar cast.

RealTime issue 65, Feb-March 2005


Heart of Gold, production photos Kim Tran

Urszula Dawkins: Westralia fantasia

Feeling at first outside her comfort zone when having to review a musical —Thea Constantino’s Heart of Gold at PICA – Urszula Dawkins is quickly taken with this allegory of a quest for independence staged in the town of Paucity. The luscious writing, fine performances and direction that stretch the musical form yield, more than madness and satire, a bleak poignancy in a world where patriotism runs riot.

See images and video from the production.

RealTime issue 94, Dec 2009-Jan 2010


Zsuzsanna Soboslay: Beautiful violence

At LIFT (London International Festival of Theatre) in 1997 as part of a joint RealTime-British reviewing team, Zsuzsanna Soboslay incisively conveys her experience of Christophe Berthonneau and Group F’s, Un Peu Plus de Lumiere (a little more light), a fireworks creation in Battersea Park, as a work at once “awful and aweful,” conjuring, beyond beauty, “Vietnam with napalm, London with firebombs.”

The RealTime LIFT 1997 coverage, including this review, will soon be available in our archive.

14 November 2018