Development at MKA

I may not have been forthcoming with posts of late, and it is purely because I have been held captive by preparations and rehearsals for a double bill at Theatre Works by MKA, who seem to have been making headlines only a couple of months ago with The Economistwritten by Tobias Manderson-Galvin currently directing Tinkertown (by Nathaniel Moncrieff) for the season.

Style Interlude: Before I met Toby, I heard of several odd accounts of people’s encounters with Toby. Yes, he may seem unconventional but there’s method to his madness. At least I hope there is. Clothes make the man, but insanity, you see, maketh the style icon.

Tobias Manderson-Galvin at a rehearsal for Tinkertown

Incidentally, there has been a bit of a stir caused by this article by Stephen Crittenden in The Global Mail with regard to theatre bloggers, particularly Jane Simmons, head of drama at Sydney’s Anglican St Andrew’s Cathedral School, and her blog vividly entitled Shit on Your Play. Pardon my French, please. A hefty debate has already ensued in the Crog Blog (or the Al Crog’s blog, or Alison Croggon’s blog) where they discuss nicely everything from media, reporting, critique to Gina Rinehart’s mysterious decision to buy ample stake at Fairfax, even when, everyone knows, the state of media is rapidly shifting. 

Of some pertinence is Crittenden’s questioning of the state of theatre steered by the new generation of directors, some of whom have been accused of ‘theatrical narcissism’ and the spanking of monkeys, where text and writing is no longer the new black.

Luckily, at MKA, Theatre of New Writing, (having had a chance to observe for a while,) writers are still valued and work alongside directors to develop sound pieces of theatre, and the text shines glimmeringly above all else.

In this particular instance, I was at a rehearsal for Hose by Bridget Mackey to witness an amusing segment where the actors sight-read a new scene freshly written by Bridget in response to the development. It seems nonsensical, but is actually quite brilliant.

And while you’re at it, check out the National Play festival, where, in association with Playwriting Australia, MKA are presenting 3 readings, including Glyn Roberts’ deliciously vampiric Triangle and a remount of The Economist, in case you missed all the fuss before. All this at the Malthouse Theatre, as part of the ‘Red Eye’ Special, commencing at approximately bedtime.




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