Audiences will experience two very different perspectives on adult life when the multi-award winning hit Hello, Goodbye and Happy Birthday comes to Geelong Performing Arts Centre in July.
Hello, Goodbye & Happy Birthday celebrates two milestone birthdays – eighteen and eighty – major transition points of adult life. One represents untold potential; the other, the accumulation of a lifetime of experiences.
This production is scripted from intimate real-life conversations with real people on either side of these milestones by Melbourne based theatre maker Roslyn Oades and collaborators.
“The idea came to me several years ago when I just happened to be invited to an 18th birthday and an 80th birthday in close succession,” Oades explains.
“I found going to these two parties both so close together felt so profound…like I’d witnessed the bookends of adult life.”
Oades’ extensive research was conducted over a two-year period and included interviewing and collecting audio from young people in high schools, older people in nursing homes and crashing as many parties as she could.
The edited documentary audio is fed to the actors through headphones, and is performed complete with all the coughs, stutters, laughs, pauses and turns of phrase that make real people so interesting. The technique is called headphone verbatim and it creates extraordinary immediate and vivid performances.
Audiences are offered a rare opportunity to eavesdrop on the conversations of those grappling with how to say goodbye; and those struggling to work out where to begin.
“There’s a lot of humanity in the work, so I’m hoping there will be a lot of connections and people will come out telling their own stories,” said Oades.
Playful and affecting in equal measure, Hello, Goodbye and Happy Birthday comes to Geelong Performing Arts Centre as part of the 2017 Deakin University Theatre Season for five performances only, July 12-15. Tickets are $58 or less, book at gpac.org.au or phone Box Office on 5225 1200.
‘One of the most charming shows of the year..a truly celebratory glimpse of the vitality and resistance of two groups of people often marginalised or portrayed in ageist stereotypes.’ ABC Arts