Resolution is a brand new work produced by Brave New Word Theatre Company and is set to arrive on stage at The Actor’s Pulse at Redfern on July 26.
Since 2013, Brave New Word (BNW) has worked with writers to produce new work, and the company has been recognised as a leading platform for emerging Australian playwrights and theatre practitioners.
Director of Resolution, Sascha Hall, tells Theatre People about the extensive process involved in the development of a new work with BNW.
“[The] BNW process is always unique,” she says. “The beauty of their approach is that a new work is never finished, you are allowed to continuously embellish, improve, expand on ideas throughout the process, including in the rehearsal room.
“The greatest part of this is that the cast gets to have artistic licence of the work… We can work with their ideas… and allow the play to include their own creative voices. BNW is not prescriptive, the play is not the finished product of the author alone, rather an ever-evolving collaboration and nurturing of ideas by the author, the cast and the creative team. This lends itself to a very inclusive and driven rehearsal process of which all involved want to see the work succeed and the story connect to the audience.”
Before Resolution, Hall directed Pamela Proestos’ Of Monopoly and Women for BNW.
“I have always enjoyed the unique creative process of BNW, which is why I didn’t hesitate to snap up the opportunity to direct Resolution,” she tells Theatre People.
“The play resonates with me much like Of Monopoly and Women; it takes to relationships with a magnifying glass. Some images are ugly and some are beautiful, it is the complex humanity behind these relationships that make it such a captivating story for the stage.”
BNW’s Resolution is the culmination of a 12-month development period.
“Company members and myself collaborated with [Resolution’s playwright] Luke Holmes to create a new Australian work. We discussed ideas, themes and direction, and gradually began building and expanding our ideas.”
Hall says she was involved at the beginning of the creative process and returned over a year later, when Holmes’ first draft of Resolution had been written, created off the back of many more creative workshops.
“From my perspective, it was remarkable to witness such an incredible progression of the work; from reaching to the ends of our imagination in a workshop to a fully-fledged script and story 12 months later,” she says.
Resolution tells the story of Abigail Woods, who’s tried her entire life to separate herself from her mother, Diane, the public and formidable ‘media matriarch’. While loved and respected by her peers and the public, Woods has never shared the same opinion of her mother. But when Diane dies suddenly, Woods finds herself catapulted into the world of corporate media.
“We follow Abigail as she deals with the death of her estranged mother whilst simultaneously trying to fill the shoes of this very powerful woman,” Hall says.
“Resolution explores Abigail’s journey through a lens of past, the present and an uncertain future. Abigail’s personal and professional relationships are challenged through her efforts to deal with these tremendous life changes.”
Asked what excites her most about Resolution, Hall tells Theatre People that it’s the cast.
“I don’t think I’ve ever felt as safe as a director as I have with these generous and creative people,” she says. “I feel so privileged to be able to share a creative space with these incredible minds and expand our ideas with each other. The rehearsal room is always alive with imagination and excitement for its potential. There is nothing I enjoy more than being around such wonderful creative energies.”
And what does she think audience members will most enjoy about their experience seeing Resolution?
“I think most Australian audiences enjoy new Australian work being given a chance. We want to see stories about us, about relationships that are familiar to us and protagonists we can identify with. I think they will enjoy the energy and honesty the cast brings to these characters and the story. I’m really excited to hear audience feedback!”
RESOLUTION - SEASON DETAILS
Venue The Actor’s Pulse (103 Regent St, Redfern, Sydney NSW 2016)
Dates 26, 28, 29, 30th July and 2, 4, 5, 6th August
Tickets Full price $25, Concessions $22, 20% discount for groups (10+)