Hypothesizing what we would change if we moved to another planet is at the core of Turn, Turn, Turn, a new Australian play debuting at Theatre Works: Explosives Factory.
Would our attitudes change? Would we heed the lessons of the past? Or would we just transport our behaviours, opinions and actions to our new environment? These are amongst the questions playwright Keith Gow poses.
When we meet Hon (Melanie Audrey) and Tee (Sodi Murphy-Shrives) they are waiting to leave Earth Seven and head to Earth Eight. Things are pretty dire on Earth Seven due to climate change and the powers that be have selected ‘the chosen’ to move to the new planet.
Jumping on an old freighter spacecraft they meet their pilot Naz (Sarah Hartnell) and engineer Elk (Eben Rojter). These are also the two other people with whom they will share their new life on Earth Eight.
Gradually over the next 70 minutes we learn more about the varied backgrounds of the four. They are all hiding secrets. The question – can they work together and make a better world despite their different backgrounds and resulting prejudices?
Given the conflict at the start of their journey and during the flight it’s not a positive start!
According to Gow part of the inspiration for writing the play was his desire to write a road movie set in space.
However, the main reason was his interest in exploring power and privilege and how relationships can be formed under pressure.
“Turning my eye on my own privilege is what has led me to design a future that is worlds away and just the same,”Gow explained.
“The struggle is real. The fact these characters are flying away from Earth Seven suggests that humanity is always repeating its mistakes. But maybe the Eighth time is the charm?”
It was a question audience members were pondering before the final curtain thanks to the efforts of the four actors who worked well together as an ensemble to bring Gow’s words to life.
Turn, Turn, Turn is playing at Theatre Works: Explosives Factory until September 23. Visit the Theatre Works website for tickets and more information.
* Photo credit: Phoebe Anne Taylor.
Jenny Burns attended the opening night of Turn, Turn, Turn as a guest of the producers.
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