Family secrets are revealed as theatre show double bill Stardust and The Mission comes to Geelong Performing Arts Centre for two performances on May 16-17.
The Geelong shows kick off a 14-venue six-month tour through Victoria for locally based The Space Company.
Stardust is the story of the esteemed Victorian jazz musician Col Brain and his wooden dresser – which sat unopened for over 25 years in the family garage of his grandson: the multi-award winning ABC presenter and performer, Joel Carnegie.
A once prized possession, the dresser hadn’t been opened since Col had died. So what was inside? Originally commissioned as a radio documentary for ABC Radio National, this one-man show won “Best Performance By An Actor” (Joel Carnegie) and “Best Innovation” at the 2017 New York Festivals International Radio Awards.
“Col Brain was an incredibly respected musician and teacher across Victoria and he left a legacy in the music he played, the students he taught, the family he loved and in me – so the show will be full of jazz standards and songs from Col’s era,” he said.
After interval, award winning actor Tom Molyneux (The Nose; The Ministry) shares the story of his great, great uncle and ‘Fighting Gunditjmara’ man from South-West Victoria, Allan McDonald.
“Allan McDonald was one of Victoria’s first Indigenous soldiers to enlist for World War I, he fought abroad in some of the most famous ANZAC campaigns, including at Gallipoli and the Battle of Beersheba,” said Molyneux. “Despite suffering extreme racism on his return to Australia – Allan fought for the rights of his Indigenous community. This is a story about not giving up on what you believe in, and fighting for justice, whatever the cost.”
Directed by award winning director James Jackson (The Nose) and created in collaboration with Gunditjmara community members, The Mission traces the account of a soldier at war; both at home and abroad, with the show set to unlock some shocking secrets about Molyneux’s family past.
With the Geelong West Brass Band also performing across both shows, Stardust and The Mission will reveal the extraordinary stories of two ordinary Australians whose legacies still reverberate today – in a double bill that brings to life both lingering memories and lessons from the past.