No-one can say I’m taking it easy. That cool guy in the red cap looks pretty relaxed and comfortable though, as we arrive at the Opera House forecourt. Photo: Marathon Photos.
Apologies. I’ve gone AWOL from the blog for weeks. It’s been a busy time, capped off by the busiest Sunday I can remember.
It was my suggestion to Andy Griffiths, currently Australia’s best-selling author, with rock-star status for 6-12-year-olds: “Our 52-Storey Treehouse play opens in the Sydney Opera House on the same morning as the Sydney Marathon arrives there. Parking will be a nightmare. Let’s run the half marathon, duck into the cast dressing rooms for a shower, then zip round to the Playhouse Theatre to watch the premiere of the show.”
So we do just that. Continue reading
‘When I was at drama school, I didn’t think my life would turn out like this,’ says actor Drew Livingston, pulling on a pantomime horse head. James Elliot, the horse’s back legs, agrees. ‘I imagined myself doing Chekov, sitting in an armchair talking about Moscow.’
In a couple of weeks we’ll be in the Sydney Opera House, performing our live version of the best-selling Australian book of 2014, The 52-Storey Treehouse. Though we’re well into rehearsals I’m still tinkering with the script, trying to make scenes run smoothly, cutting jokes that are falling flat, ‘killing my darlings’.
It’s tricky to stage a caterpillar eating two speeding steamrollers, an epic trek by Ninja snails and detectives Andy and Terry zooming around in their Flying Fried Egg Car. Somehow, we’ll manage it. It always comes right on the night. Continue reading
Rima Te Wiata (Mrs van Amersfoort), Patrick Carroll (Thomas) and Tim Carlsen (Jesus) in Silo Theatre’s THE BOOK OF EVERYTHING. Photo: Gate Photography.
My stage adaptation of Guus Kuijer’s wonderful novel The Book of Everything is enjoying a bit of a boom. There are at least two different productions being performed this weekend, with more to come during the year. There’s even a production planned for Finland.
I’ve just seen Silo Theatre’s excellent professional production in the Auckland Arts Festival in New Zealand, which has been getting rave reviews and wonderful ovations.
Next Mevrouw T and I will be driving south of Sydney to see Nowra Players’ version, which happens to star our friend and fine actor Peter Barley.
I wish all cast and crew members broken limbs for the rest of their seasons. And I know all the lines, should anything untoward happen!
Meanwhile, if any readers of this blog happen to be drama teachers, theatre directors or major Broadway/West End producers…or if you or anyone you know would just like to read the play, here’s where you can get the script: Continue reading
The 26-Storey Treehouse cast in full flight. Matthew Lilley, James Lee, Andrew Johnston and Eliza Logan. Photo: Branco Gaica.
Bear with me here…I want to use a blog post to pay tribute to my Treehouse play work colleagues, three of whom have just done their final performance after nearly a year of involvement in the project.
Touring a production for family audiences month after month places enormous demands on the actors and the stage crew. Continue reading
Coming very soon…
The self-inflating underpants fail to blow up. The rehearsal stops. It’s not my problem; I’m just the writer.
‘The underpants inflate, almost smothering Terry’ says the line in my script. Somebody else will work out how to make them do this. There’s a team of talented, dedicated professionals in the rehearsal room, and they’re taking those self-inflating underpants very seriously.
Because creating The 26-Storey Treehouse: Live on Stage is a serious business. Continue reading
Filed under Theatre, Writing
Happy New Year! We’re diving straight back into it here, with The 13-Storey Treehouse returning to the Sydney Opera House after a sell-out season there last September/October.
Nice news too that the show has just been nominated in the Sydney Theatre Awards as Best Production for Children. And I see that Andy Griffiths’ and Terry Denton’s The 39-Story Treehouse was the best-selling Australian book of 2013. That’s not ‘best-selling children’s book’; it’s ‘best-selling book‘ – a fantastic achievement. So naturally there’s pressure on to keep the crazy plays coming.
A workshop of The 26-Storey Treehouse is next and I’m looking forward to working with the great production team.
The promo video above includes a few clips of the play, and the ‘creatives’ (don’t you like that word?) saying nice things about each other and the show.
The 13-Story Treehouse will tour Australia during this year, playing in Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide as well as regional towns. For the full touring schedule, CLICK HERE.
And for those able to catch the madness in Sydney, bookings for the Opera House in January can be made HERE.
This shameless self-promoting plug is now over (if you don’t do it yourself, who else will?) so I can wish everyone a great 2014!
Alison Bell, Matthew Whittet, Peter Carroll and Claire Jones in The Book of Everything. Photo: Heidrun Lohr.
Writers are a needy bunch. Releasing our work into the world begins with vanity, hope or a desire to engage, and having taken the plunge we’re pathetically grateful if people tell us they enjoy it.
It’s nice if ‘people’ means ‘thousands of people prepared to buy our books or tickets to our plays’, but even two or three supporters will do, as long as they rave about our brilliance and are not just saying that because they’re our parents.
Which is why, when a new play of mine opens, I love reading what people think about it on blogs, Twitter and FaceBook. Continue reading
Filed under Theatre, Writing