2020 – what a year!

Suffice to say that 2020 has not shaped up as the year that any of us had planned – but here at MWT we have enjoyed a highly productive period of writing and theatre-making.

Our year began on 5th March with our one-night International Women’s Day show The Best and Fairest – Celebration which will lead on to the theatrical season The Best, The Fairest, The First, which has been necessarily rescheduled and will now be presented at Gasworks in 2021, from 3rd – 6th March.

Our annual In One Act creative development program this year ran from 13th June – 17th September. Our monthly Workshops via Zoom have been well attended by MWT members and artists from the broader theatrical community, with the last one held on 9th November.

On 5th October we presented Series Two of VICTORIOUS, an evening of rehearsed readings of scripts written by Victorian writers in response to the current pandemic. You can find out more about VICTORIOUS and enjoy the Recordings from both shows HERE.

And with the recent lifting of restrictions, we are delighted to confirm that we will finish the year with MWT’s SEASON 2020, which showcases new monologues and short plays written by our members. Pairing The Metropolis Monologues with The City Park Plays, SEASON 2020 has also been rescheduled, and will now be presented from 17th – 22nd December at The MC Showroom. Tickets available at: http://www.themcshowroom.com/event/mwt-2020-season/

We are confident that we have turned 2020 into another rewarding year for this city’s playwrights, and we invite YOU to be a part of our current and future story.

 

2020 CALENDAR

This year our monthly workshops were conducted via Zoom video conferencing, and ran as follows. We look forward to presenting a combination of workshops via Zoom and in a physical meeting space in 2021. Details of current EVENTS and future workshops may be found on the EVENTS  page

February 3 
The Art of the Short Play

March 2  
The Craft of the Monologue

April 6
Script Development Night – Feedback on scripts written at Feb and March workshops

May 4
A Bunch of Scripts #1 – Workshopping of new scripts

June 1
Script Markets – opportunities for scripts

July 6
SEASON 2020 – Script Meeting
Writers meet directors to discuss scripts

August 3
VICTORIOUS – Series One
Readings of a selection of submissions received for VICTORIOUS

September 2
Structure and Storytelling in a Dramatic Monologue
A monologue-writing workshop, facilitated by Virginia Proud

October 5
VICTORIOUS – Series Two
Readings of a selection of submissions received for VICTORIOUS

November 9
A Bunch of Scripts #2 – Workshopping of new scripts

 

2019 show photos, from top right:
Sarah Hamilton – Daring Dog Monologues
Giovanni Piccolo and Peter Logan – Beachside Stories
Del Jordan and Faran Martin – Six Degrees at a Hot Melbourne Market
Tony Manago – Beachside Stories
Fringe cast – Daring Dog Monologues

Photos by John A. Edwards

 

 

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Q & A  with  MICHAEL OLSEN  ‘The Forgotten Return’ & ‘Sapling’

Michael’s monologue ‘The Forgotten Return’ and his short play ‘Sapling’ will both be performed in MWT’s Season 2020 (November 2020). We asked Michael for an insight into his playwriting life and journey.

Q. You have a lot of produced plays to your credit. Which of these would you describe as your favourite – and what makes it so?

Isn’t that like asking a parent who their favourite child is?  The parent is supposed to say they love all their children equally. In a sense I’m the same: I love all my plays equally—but even without a blowtorch to the soles of my feet there are some more equal than others.  My favourite pieces go back to the beginning: Cannibals of the Heart (eight scenes all based around the theme of betrayal); Double Tap (my first one-act play) about two young men about to graduate from assassin school; and of course Two Women & A Chair (because this one went around the world, was so theatrical, and was the first of my works to be published).

Q. Where does a play ‘start’ for you? With an idea, a character, a line, a question needing an answer – where?

A play can start from anything, anywhere, at any time.  You really need to be awake to all possibilities.  That’s why the notebook and pen are an essential part of this writer’s toolbox: it doesn’t really mean anything until it’s down on the page.  Once it’s down on the page, that’s when the hard work really begins.  As Hemingway once said: “The first draft of anything is shit.”

Q. Tell us about other jobs you have done in your life, and how they rank in relation to your role as a Playwright.

Nothing has equalled the role of writer.  I haven’t really seen myself having a career.  I have usually seen each of my jobs (public servant, administrator, factory worker) as a means to support my passion.  The challenge, as always, is to write the best you can, communicate the best you can, give an actor a challenge, hand over to a director a piece and say: “Make this work even better.”  The thrill is always to finally see and know your work is making that essential connection with the audience

Photos:
Michael Olsen, pictured with his author photo at Daring Dog Monologues (November 2019)
A scene from Two Women and a Chair
A scene from
The Last Dance of the Plum Sisters

Photos supplied by Michael Olsen.

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