The Seed

The Seed
By Kate Mulvany. Melbourne Theatre Company (Vic). Arts Centre Melbourne, Fairfax Studio. Director, Anne-Louise Sarks; Set and Costume Design, Christina Smith; Lighting Designer, Matt Scott. 17 February – 4 April, 2012.

The Seed, by Kate Mulvany, is a play about the uncomfortable truths that exist in all families, and the disempowering and intrusive nature of war.

Rose, a writer travels with her father from Australia to meet her Irish grandfather in Nottingham, hoping to be rewarded with the Maloney family history. Sifting through the family folklore, Rose’s questions lead her into uncomfortable truths about herself, her family, and ultimately into greater appreciation of their imperfect family bonds.

Gradually family truths seep through the cracks of conflict. Seeds are planted in the minds of the audience from the outset, teasing us unto speculation and provoking empathy shifts, until the audience is left wondering if we know anything at all.

In the intimate setting of the Fairfax Studio, Mulvaney’s impressive script is directed by MTC mainstage debutante Anne-Louise Sarks, and brought to life with compelling performances by Max Gillies, Sara Gleeson and Tony Martin.

Strobe lighting, frequent strong coarse language and loud noises are softened periodically as Rose tells her Cray Fishing story.  Some patrons struggled down the steep steps in the theatre, with no hand rails. 

The Seedwill have special poignancy for those who have delved into family history to discover more than they bargained for. It is warmly recommended.

Lucy Graham

Images: (L-R): Tony Martin, Max Gillies & (L-R): Sara Gleeson, Max Gillies. Photographer: Jeff Busby

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