Category Archives: Current Productions

Tomorrow’s Wake

A new work, as yet unpublished, set in the midst of the cornovirus pandemic, about the need for effective climate change action. A play for the coming age, by celebrated playwright Michael Gray Griffith, for performance by Soul Theatre Inc. in the first half of 2021.

SOUL acknowledges assistance received in 2020 for development of this production from Creative Victoria under the Sustaining Creative Workers initiative.

From the playwright:

I was asked to write a play about climate change and yet it is such a confusingly huge issue that I found when I read all the modern updates, the main question I was interested in was why so many people aren’t driven to actively and passionately tackle it.  It is even well known that, instead of being alarmed, when the facts are presented to them people either scoff or just switch off.

Another interesting puzzle to me was to do with the fact that it has been discovered that the Board of one of the world’s leading oil producers not only knew in 1979 that fossil fuel use would lead to climate change and instead of acting upon it, they proceeded to try discredit the facts.     

Yet even though this is now proven people still aren’t outraged. Why?

So taking all of this in, I thought why not explore the issue of Climate Change from a fresh angle of posing questions rather than answers or facts.

And so this is the story I used to do that. 

In an ordinary suburban house Fiona’s only child Kyle, 18, has, along with two other environmental activists not only kidnapped the ex-CEO of a major oil company but brought him here. 

This was the man who in 1979 decided to bury the truth rather than act on it.

The activists want to film this ex-CEOs confession and live stream it in the hope that it will start a fire.

Initially Fiona just wants to call the police but then she realises that if she does her son could face a lengthy jail sentence for kidnapping.   

And this is where the play becomes an allegory to explore the question of why people aren’t actively tackling climate change.

When Fiona can see that her only son could go to jail, she actively and passionately even cold heartedly, starts figuring out what she has to do, and how far she is prepared to go, to save Kyle’s future. And she discovers that thanks to love, she is prepared to go to extraordinary lengths.

But at the start of the play, even though climate change could have a drastic effect on Kyle’s future Fiona is not bothered at all. In fact, she wants to get a pool installed.

One line in the play states “I wonder where we would be now if only climate change was holding a gun to your son’s head?”

And the play shows that given a clear and visible threat some people will respond accordingly and with haste. Even dramatically.

So if the ability to respond clearly exists, maybe the key to engaging the public lies in the current messaging?

That said the play itself is written to be a highly engaging tense thriller with an ending that will have the students gob smacked. 

It also has humour and one of its main themes is power, as for the length of the different factions, the activists, Fiona and the abducted man all fight to be in charge.     

Added to this the tension that the police will soon be here to arrest them keeps the plays tension tight and the plot moving along with all its twists.

Michael Gray Griffith is best known for his recent plays:

• The Magnolia Tree
• When Icebergs Burn
• Marooned
• Adrifting Through the Vomit Generation
• Australia Dot Com
• Decoupage Skin
• The Indifferent Revolutionist

Bookmark this space for more information …

S.E.A.T. (SOUL’s Educational Active Theory / Team)

In 2018, SOUL developed a new educational initiative based in schools.

S.E.A.T. is SOUL’s Educational Active Theory (or Team). It aims to educate young Australians about the urgent need to address the Climate Change Crises before it’s too (d**mned) late.

The project involves a team of performing artists visiting primary and secondary schools in Victoria. SOUL initially presents a mix of short plays, videos, talks and music, then engages with students and teachers to encourage them to get creative about climate change. A week or so later, SOUL returns to workshop the results with students, leading up to a performance opportunity or expo, either in-school or in public. The form of this presentation is up to the teachers and students to decide under SOUL’s guidance and advice.

If your school would be interested in being part of S.E.A.T., please contact our Artistic Director, Alicia Liley via our Contact page.

Soulistas flyer

SOUL’s Choir, SOULISTAS!

Soulistas means zest for life, love and protection of nature, care for the oppressed and love of song and music!

“Singing is the best thing you can do for your soul”, (Rosie L.)

Join our fun and friendly community choir and make a difference. We are very inclusive; reading music not required.

Soul was formed in October 2017.

Mondays 6.45 for 7-9pm during school term.
The Fairfield Uniting Church, 85 Gillies Street, Fairfield
(Note Soulistas is not a religious choir)

More info: martin@soultheatre.org.au
Alicia: 0425 728 427

The Climamania Project Stimulus

Having been a Climate Change Activist since late 2002, Alicia Liley proposed to SOUL’s Board at the 2009 AGM that Soul Theatre Inc. produce a production, educating society and the politicians about the incredible seriousness of the Climate Change Crisis – before it is way too late!

Everyone agreed, so as Artistic Director, Alicia searched for a single Playwright for SOUL to commission on this play tackling the Climate Change Crisis

She obtained the performing rights to The Australian Premiere of The Contingency Plan by UK playwright, Steve Waters. The Contingency Plan.

The Contingency Plan is composed of two full length plays, On the Beach and Resilience.

To assist with SOUL’s purpose of this Climate Change message, Alicia had previously curated various other art forms in addition to this production.

These creative events of music, poetry, photography, comedy, poetry and Climate Science speakers are an addition to the combination of Short Plays, with all creative endeavours aligning with the theme of Climate Change.

This has taken shape as Climamania: Festival of Short Plays and Music.

2009 ongoing: The Climamania Project

The Climamania Project:

Oh Honeys, there just are way too many deaths and destruction occurring throughout the world. It is mankind’s responsibility to protect our home – Alicia Liley

[Baa Atoll, Maldives, image courtesy
Creative Commons BY-SA
]

C6 (Climamania Event Number 6) — November 2017

SOUL will be performing The Australian Premiere of the UK playwright Steve Waters’ The Contingency Plan as a play-reading in 2017.

This script is composed of two full length plays that encapsulate various viewpoints regarding Climate Change, offering a realistic balanced portrayal of attitudes of denial and the reality of the damaging environmental circumstances exhibited by the Climate Change Crisis.

This double bill offers varied scientific opinions, media aspects and of course, the varied political attitudes apparent within today’s reality! With the finality of the public’s confusion as the situation worsens.