Short+Sweet 2008 Shortlist Announced

Short+Sweet Festival Director Van Badham has announced a mouth-watering shortlist of entries for the ‘biggest little play festival in the world’ – set to run at the Newtown and Seymour Centre theatres from 16 January 2008.

A record 1550 entries came from every state and territory in Australia, as well as from Canada, Croatia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, New Zealand, Singapore, the USA and the UK.

The best 300 of these, selected after a painstaking process involving a team of professional arts industry judges, will be presented to the festival’s 130 or so successful directors for the final choice. They themselves will have been selected from hundreds more applicants, and will be announced at the season’s directors’ launch on 10 December 6.30pm at the Seymour Centre Sound Lounge.

Australian names that feature among playwrights whose scripts made the cut include: Mary Rachel Brown, Vanessa Bates, Robert Reid, Glyn Roberts, Tom Holloway, Jonathan Gavin (author of the upcoming Tiger Country at the Griffin), Ben Ellis, Noelle Janacewska, Ross Mueller (author of Belvoir's Construction of the Human Heart), Suzie Miller, Ernie Blackmore, Nick Parsons, Linda Aronson, Drew Fairley (Bangers and Mash), Ron Elisha, Emma Vuletic and Benito Di Fonzo.

International playwrights of note include the USA's Corey Hinkle, Anna Ziegler, Lisa Dillman, Aurin Squires and Carson Kreitzer. The British heavies are Glyn Cannon, Adam Brace and Ben Ockrent.

There's a charged selection of political plays this year - many plays about the War on Terror and the occupation of Iraq. There are spoofs of Australian bush ballads, noir send-ups, risque comedies and a zoological smorgasbord of meerkats, bears, squid, dolphins, dragons, swinging ape-men and a giant chicken. There are plays about Bob Dylan, Rene Descartes, Harold Bloom, Stanislavski, Eva Braun and Rachel Corrie. There are funny plays, sad plays, plays about sex and plays about a most unusual use for balloons. There are plays about the nature of plays themselves, plays without characters and a play comprised entirely of spam emails!

Short+Sweet 2008’s “Top90” will run Wed-Sat at 8.15pm plus Sat 3.15 & Sun 6.15pm at Newtown Theatre for five weeks from 16 Jan; and Tues-Sat at 8pm at the Seymour Centre Downstairs Theatre for four weeks from 22 Jan.

Additional one-off ‘wild card’ performances take place 3pm at the Seymour Downstairs on Sat 2, 9 and 16 Feb plus 2pm Sun 27 Jan at Newtown Theatre.

The Gala Awards Final will be held in the Everest Theatre at Seymour Centre on Fri 22 and Sat 23 Feb, 7.30pm.

The festival launch proper takes place at the Seymour Theatre Centre courtyard Tues 8 Jan at 6.30pm.

More info always available at www.shortandsweet.org

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