An explosive comedy about love, life, trust and perspective…laced with a little paranoia

Life seems peachy in the McTavish household, that is until a live grenade shows up in the living room one afternoon. Follow the journey of Busby McTavish (Garry McDonald) as he tries to discover who left the explosive device. The Grenade opens Thursday 15 April 2010 at 8pm at the Arts Centre, Playhouse.

When you are a major advisor and lobbyist like Busby McTavish of course you step on a few toes. Even so, whose toe would be so sore as to provoke them to place a live grenade in the middle of his living room? Is it a warning? Or someone’s stupid idea of a practical joke? Or maybe the threat comes from within, from among his troubled family. Sounds paranoid? Sure – but even paranoids have enemies. Time to take cover, as sometimes life can go off unexpectedly…


Was it his 16 year old daughter Lola (Eloise Mignon), the self-confessed geek, or perhaps her strange new boyfriend Wheat (Gig Clarke)? Or maybe it was his wife Sally (Belinda Bromilow), the ex nun/romance novelist? Or perhaps Sally’s new erotic-writing buddy the sensual Randy (Jolyon James)? Or the tarot-reading alcoholic ex-wife Kerry (Genevieve Picot)? Or was it his jealous work colleague Political Consultant Whitman (Mitchell Butel)? Or maybe, just maybe, it was one of the hundreds of other political activists Busby has managed to aggravate…yet again?


‘It was a joy to read this free-wheeling farce from Tony McNamara. His comic voice is the boldest and most devil-may-care of all our contemporary playwrights. In The Grenade McNamara targets those pushers and pimps of the political world, the special interest lobbyists. The swipes are broad but they land hard, the laughs come fast but they’re sure fire, the satire stretches the point but only so it snaps back with comic elasticity. Playing it paranoid is a walk in the park for National Living Treasure Garry McDonald, who’ll be enriched by the fabulous Genevieve Picot, the brilliant Belinda Bromilow and wrangled by MTC Associate Director Peter Evans – this is sure to be a winner.’ MTC Artistic Director Simon Phillips


Tony McNamara is one of Australia’s most successful contemporary playwrights, renowned for his wild-swinging satire and cheerful swipes at the darker side of human nature. McNamara was nominated for the NSW Premier’s Literary Award for his first play The Café Latte Kid and he won the 1995 Phillip Parsons’ Award for Young Playwrights.


McNamara’s plays include: The John Wayne Principle, The Give and Take, The Recruit and The Unlikely Prospect of Happiness. Alongside his playwriting ability, McNamara has also had a successful film and television career, writing such films as Kick to Kick, Seduction, The Rage in Placid Lake and The Best Manifesto which won the Australian Film Institute award for best screenplay. McNamara has also written for successful television series, such as: Tangle, Rush, Love My Way and The Secret Life of Us.


‘[His] dialogue surprises with the sharp sting of thoughts not usually articulated with such directness.’ Sydney Morning Herald





The Grenade Melbourne Theatre Company



The Arts Centre, Playhouse



Season dates: 10 April to 15 May 2010

Opening night: Thursday 15 April 2010 at 8pm



Tickets: $42.55 -$83.15: (Under 30s $30)


MTC Box Office (03) 8688 0800 or | the Arts Centre 1300 182 183 or