Red Stitch Actors Theatre Artistic Director, David Whiteley this week announced the company’s first half season for 2010. The program offers an exciting collection of new and diverse plays from around the world, including three Australian premieres, alongside Polly Stenham’s award winning, That Face.

“This is the finest collection of work we have assembled in several years. It’s a fantastic opportunity to attract new audiences to our already loyal following and deliver the top class performances our company has become known for. I’m particularly pleased to welcome an impressive list of leading directors - Nadia Tass, Kim Durban, Sarah Giles and Marcelle Schmitz”, said David Whiteley.

Season One kicks off in February with Farragut North, Beau Willimon’s brilliant tale of hubris and political expediency in the court of congressional press secretaries, followed by John Clancy’s obscenely funny bouffon, Fatboy featuring David Whiteley, Andrea Swifte and Olivia Connolly. In May, the company presents That Face featuring Kat Stewart and Dion Mills. That Face is the hugely successful first play from young British writer, Polly Stenham, which opened to rave reviews internationally. June showcases the premiere of Spaniard, Jordi Galcerán Ferrer’s intriguing corporate comedy, The Grönholm Method, directed by Nadia Tass.

Since 2002, Red Stitch has developed and showcased work by new and established playwrights and has emerged as one of Australia's most successful independent companies. They have produced around 70 contemporary plays, almost all Australian premieres, by acclaimed writers from the UK, the USA and Europe, including Martin Crimp, Edward Albee, Paula Vogel, Mark O’Rowe, Richard Bean, Sarah Kane, Leo Butler, Philip Ridley, Simon Stephens and Kenneth Lonergan. The Company has won a number of major industry awards including Best Production, Best Direction, Best Actor and Best New Writing.

A successful new writer development program and graduate program (in collaboration with the VCA and Swinburne Performing Arts) has created substantial opportunities for young and emerging talent, and a national tour of the company’s first project developed through its Red Stitch Writers initiative, Red Sky Morning by Tom Holloway, follows later in the year.

2010 marks nine years of work for the fledgling group and a major milestone for a company that is still growing as an organisation and raising standards in performance.

Farragut North
by Beau Willimon
3 February – 6 March
Australian Premiere
Directed by Kim Durban

Farragut North is set in the heart of Washington’s lobbying district, where political aspirants, press secretaries, power brokers and media reps negotiate votes, public opinion and political futures.

Stephen Bellamy is smart, young, talented, attractive, and has become extraordinarily canny in the art of using information, friendship and personal morality as political currency. So good, in fact, that he has started to attract the interest of some powerful players from the opposite side of the fence.

“A morality tale about a ‘crackberry’ generation mover and shaker…and the frenzied scheming and counterscheming of would-be Washington kingmakers”
LA Times

by John Clancy
17 March – 17 April
Australian Premiere
Directed by Marcelle Schmitz

With our consumer culture and its apparent compulsion to rid the planet of every available resource, John Clancy’s corrosive satire is a grotesque and timely indictment of the seemingly insatiable appetite for power and violence.

Make room for Fatboy. Meaner than Stalin, hungrier than Idi Amin, deadlier than Pol Pot, he is the grotesque composite of every despot who ever lived and he’s savagely funny.

“Supersized, Supercruel and Absurdly Powerful” The New York Times

That Face
by Polly Stenham
28 April – 29 May
Directed by Sarah Giles

Polly Stenham’s debut play is a hard-hitting, intense and visceral dissection of those who become parents to their parents.

Winner of the Charles Wintour Award 2007 and the Critics’ Circle Award 2008, That Face is the work of a confident new talent able to communicate moments of high drama punctured with moments of rich, dark humour.

“In every respect this is a remarkable and unforgettable piece of theatre” Daily Telegraph

The Grönholm Method
by Jordi Galcerán Ferrer
Translation by Anne García-Romero
9 June – 10 July
Australian Premiere
Directed by Nadia Tass (The Big Steal, Malcolm, Love and Mortar)

Catalonian writer Jordi Galcerán’s internationally successful Spanish-language play El Método Grönholm poses the question: how far would you go to get the job of your dreams? What would you do to destroy the competition?

Candidates for a high-level multinational position are put through a nasty final selection process that utilises a mysterious human resources strategy known as ‘The Grönholm Method’. An amusing and intriguing meditation on our contemporary fascination with reality TV style contests of will.

“The king of black comedy” El País

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