Presented by Patrick Livesey
A world-premiere thriller set against the horrors of the anti-Gay purges in Chechnya, presented by the award-winning creator of The Boy, George and Gone Girls, Patrick Livesey.
A Russian and an Australian walk into a bar in Moscow. Neither are who they say they are.
Written by emerging queer playwright, Angus Cameron and starring Livesey and his real-life partner, Wil King (ABC's Why Are You Like This?) DIЯT is a thrilling and seductive exploration of sexuality, solidarity and persecution in modern-day Russia.
$1 from every ticket sold will be donated to the Russian LGBT Network, an organisation promoting equal rights and respect for human dignity throughout Russia.
Tickets available through holdenstreettheatres.com and adelaidefringe.com.au
WINNER - The Frank Ford Award
WINNER Overall - Adelaide Critics Circle Award
WINNER Week One - Adelaide Critics Circle Award
WINNER Week One - Bank SA Best Theatre
Adelaide Fringe 2021 Reviews for 'DIЯT'
★★★★★ "It is a gripping drama, a strong commentary on journalism, and if that isn’t enough for 45 minutes, you leave the theatre with a different sense of worldliness." - The Advertiser
★★★★★ "This excellent piece deserves to be high on your list this Fringe" - Glam Adelaide
★★★★★ "It is an edge-of-the-seat experience, wonderfully written and expertly performed." - Barefoot Review
★★★★★ "There are references to drug use and sexual activities in DIЯT, but the real seduction comes from the way we are taken out of our comfort zone and led into ever more dangerous territory. " - The Clothesline
★★★★★ "DIRT is a masterful piece of writing and acting." - On The House
★★★★★ "...it is empathetic and urgent, and certainly an important show this Festival season. " - Collage Adelaide
★★★★★ "Occasionally, 60 minutes can change your life, and for me, Patrick Livesey’s production of Dirt is an example of how fine theatre can showcase and educate about human rights issues in a subtle, compelling way." - Stage Whispers
★★★★★ "Undoubtedly, a five star rating for this production." - Global Media Post
★★★★★ " It makes for compelling theatre and it’s clear to see why this is a top pick at Adelaide Fringe 2021." - Upside Adelaide
★★★★★ "DIRT is a powerful play that explores a difficult subject with humour and compassion." - The AU Review
"A great show and definitely well worth seeing" - Eventalaide
★★★★1/2 - "The performances are excellent. Patrick Livesey’s Russian is an astute mix of swagger and introspection and his accent has no trace of parody or cliché. As the persistent but unworldly Conor, Wil King is a convincing foil to Livesey – and both have Cameron’s effortless dialogue and characterisation to support and propel them." - InDaily
★★★★ - "The dialogue is sharp, the characters well explored, the staging simplistically effective and the direction (by Bronwen Coleman) as tight as a drum." - All About Entertainment
★★★★★ - "...this is one not to miss" - Kryztoff Raw
Cast & Crew
Actor - Wil King is an actor, writer and producer. He recently shot the first season of Why Are You Like This? for the ABC, playing outrageous drag queen and lead role, Austin. After graduating from 16th Street’s full-time program, Wil wrote, produced and starred in the short film Fragile. He then went on to make his professional debut in Strangers in Between opposite Simon Burke AO and Helpmann Award Winner Guy Simon at fortyfive downstairs and then Sydney's Seymour Centre, gaining rave reviews for his performance of Shane. He has since collaborated again with Strangers director Daniel Lammin on Sneakyville at fortyfive downstairs, playing a reimagined Charles Manson and is currently developing a new project for television with Adam Murfet and Jessie Oldfield, directors and producers of Why Are You Like This?
‘A rising star’ - AU Review
‘As compelling as he is sensitive’ - Suzy Goes See
‘Demonstrates acute comic judgement’ - Audrey Journal
‘Wil King leaves you cheering’ - The Age
Actor - Patrick Livesey is an actor, writer, director and producer from Adelaide. In 2017, he graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts with a BFA in Theatre Practice. Since graduation, Patrick has worked between Melbourne and Adelaide, primarily writing, producing and performing original work. His 2018 play The Boy, George won the NZ Tour Ready Award at the Melbourne Fringe Festival and was nominated for Best Performance. It toured successfully to Perth, Adelaide and New Zealand Fringe Festivals. In 2019 Patrick sold the rights to this work to stand-up comedian, Joel Creasey who previewed a sold out season to Melbourne audiences in January 2020. In 2020, Patrick premiered his second play, Gone Girls where it sold out five shows at the Holden Street Theatres and earned rave reviews. In 2020 he started work on his third play, Mummy’s Boy and commissioned playwright Angus Cameron to pen the original work, DIЯT. Patrick has recently begun working with Princess Pictures on the development of an original television series.
‘A sensitive and natural performer. He is one to watch’ - Theatre Press
‘Patrick Livesey is marvellous. He holds the audience in the palm of his hand. His comic timing is exceptional.’ - Australian Arts Review
‘Impressive on so many levels’ - Theatre Review
‘He’s funny, sharp and ... absolutely delightful.’ - The Upside News
Writer - Angus Cameron is a playwright and academic. He is the author of Australia Open, which was part of Melbourne Theatre Company’s Cybec Electric season in 2019 and was produced by Bub at Kings Cross Theatre in 2020. Other plays include; The Profit, which was part of Sydney Theatre Company’s 2017 Rough Drafts program; Cavemen, which was longlisted for Red Stitch’s INK program and which was staged as a reading at Gasworks as the winner of their Midsumma Playtime award; On Behalf of Everyone Everywhere, part of a collection of short ‘plays for Australia’ at Arts Centre Melbourne; Human Error, produced by Bakers Dozen; as well as several other works. In addition to these companies he has worked with; Simon Stephens, Australian Theatre for Young People, the Hellenic Festival, the Emerging Writers Festival and Small and Loud. He is currently undertaking a Ph.D. in theatre with Raimondo Cortese at the Victorian College of the Arts.
Director - Bronwen Coleman is an internationally accredited actor, director and teacher. Having lived in New York for more than a decade, she is a Life Member of the Actors Studio, and has appeared internationally in theatre, television and films, including the Academy Award winning Capote opposite Phillip Seymour Hoffman. As a director, Bronwen is known for her in-depth rehearsal style, drawing on techniques developed at the Actors Studio. Bronwen is a graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts School of Film and Television (BFTV) and the Actors Studio Drama School (MFA). She is currently Theatre Works Associate Artist in Directing for 2020.
Lighting Designer - Mikayla Bishop, lighting designer and show-caller is thrilled to be working on the 2021 Fringe production DIЯT. Mikayla is a well rounded practitioner and has worked all around Australia but this will be her debut show since moving to Adelaide. She has worked as the lighting designer and stage manager for the stage production of Wheel of Fortune (Brisbane Metro Arts). She was the deputy head electrician on La Traviata (Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour) and technical swing on Opera Australia’s regional tour of Madama Butterfly for 2 years. Other career highlights include Assistant stage manager for Neon Tiger (La Boite Theatre company), Lead follow spot operator West Side Story (Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour) and production assistant for Olinda Yarra International Opera Festival (Gertrude Opera) Mikayla has a bachelor's degree in technical production from Queensland University of Technology and is excited to be working on this modern, thought provoking production.
Sound Design - MzRizk is a queer Melbourne-based DJ, event curator and radio presenter, renowned for her ongoing contributions to Melbourne’s rich cultural and music landscape. Her many projects are a distinct blend of music knowledge, creative diversity and cultural and community engagement. MzRizk is the curator of the extremely successful Block Party and Hip Hop High Tea series, MzRizk uses these events as a platform to showcase emerging and established artists (DJs, MCs, Dancers) to a wider audience. MzRizk co-presented the Melbourne Music Week Lunch Box series with the City of Melbourne in 2016, showcasing diverse local talent. She presents Urban Fervour weekly on Kiss FM and is a regular fixture on both Triple R FM and PBS FM rosters. MzRizk has performed at Glastonbury Festival in the UK, Womadelaide (with Neneh Cherry jumping on the mic as impromptu MC), International Soul Summit (Atlanta, US), AWME, Soundwave (Croatia), Big Day Out and Melbourne International Film Festival.
Q&A with Patrick Livesey
What led you to this Angus Cameron script and inspired you to bring it to the 2021 Fringe?
DIRT is a play that Wil and I commissioned this year in response to a number of things, not the least of which were the anti-gay Purges happening in Chechnya since 2017. We wanted to tell a story that responded not only to this atrocity but to this point in time, culturally, where a lot of really important questions are being asked around solidarity, activism and justice. Angus is a phenomenally talented writer who I met at VCA and Bronwen is a once-in-a-life time teacher and mentor who Wil met at 16th Street Actors Studio. Once we had them on board everything fell into place. I knew I needed to do this show as soon as possible and Fringe felt like the perfect home. Every year I relish the opportunity to connect with my city through my work and the chance to hone my craft in front of an open, passionate audience. 2020 was a hard year for a lot of people and, thanks to Covid, it’s an incredibly difficult time to be making concrete plans. It’s scary to be mounting a show right now but we are incredibly lucky and thankful to have the support of Adelaide Fringe, the Department of Premier and Cabinet and the Independent Arts Foundation. It’s so important that throughout all this uncertainty artists and audiences are given the chance to come together and our ability to perform in 2021 is due entirely to their support.
Do you think there are similarities to the state of Russia and Australia regarding Queer rights?
They are just such vastly different cultures I think it’s impossible to even try to compare. But I will! Queer rights, like all minority rights, are something that need to be fought for everywhere and at all times. What’s interesting about Russia, and this is something that might compare slightly to Australia, is a very strong desire to return to ‘traditional values.’ In Russian society, there is no room for queerness within this paradigm. In Australia, we are so incredibly lucky to enjoy so many rights and freedoms, but I think we must always tread carefully around this idea of ‘traditional values’. As more people get a seat at the table and more voices are heard, you begin to realise how much tradition is just a means of keeping people and society locked in a certain place and time, rarely for the benefit of all.
For those who loved The Boy, George and Gone Girls, what can they expect that is different and similar in DIRT?
A lot is different! And I think that’s what’s going to be really exciting for people who have enjoyed my past work. The tone of DIRT is much darker than anything I’ve done before and it’s allowing me to utilise different parts of my craft as an actor. Some of this has been lying dormant since drama school, a lot of it I’ve developed in the years since working with people like Bronwen. To me DIRT feels like a maturing of my work and I feel really honoured that people who have seen my past shows will be able to follow me on this journey. What audiences can continue to expect from me with this show is a completely engrossing and unique world, maybe one that you didn’t quite expect but one that you will walk away being glad you got to be a part of. I’m really proud of everything I’ve done at Adelaide Fringe but DIRT is going to be something else. I can’t wait.
What has it been like working with your partner in the production process?
So far, pretty fantastic! Wil and I are really lucky to share a lot of things but in particular is our passion for our work and for meaningful storytelling. To be bringing something that is so important to both of us into our relationship is really special. As a couple we are constantly talking about the work we’re doing, giving advice, reading things, watching things; so to be doing all of that over a production we’re bringing to life together feels like the most obvious, natural extension of this. Stay tuned for the fights and tantrums!
What is something you would like the audience to learn from the play?
Empathy and humanity are complex, confusing and essential qualities. DIRT is a story about a relationship between two people who feel a lot but have convinced themselves that like they lack enough common-ground to really help each other. Maybe this is true, maybe it’s not. With this play we want audiences to ask questions about their own lives and maybe find spaces where they have more capacity for empathy and action than they had previously thought. The world is changing in innumerable ways and at the heart of this change must always be our humanity. What else is there?
Describe your show in 3 words
Gripping. Unsettling. Shocking.
OUR COVID PLAN
HST is incredibly excited to present a safe and secure Fringe Program. To ensure public safety we have implemented a COVID Safe plan. Social distancing, density and hygiene practices will be adhered to at all times. Only attend the event if you are feeling well. If you have any COVID-19 symptoms please ensure you get tested as soon as possible and follow social isolation guidelines until you recover.
If you are unable to attend your event please call 8225 8888 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your ticketing options.
The safety and health of our patrons, staff and performers is our main priority and we will do everything we can to ensure a fun and safe evening out.
Season: Fringe 2021
Please be advised this show includes drug and sexual references. This show contains the use of herbal cigarettes.
Dates: 16th Feb - 21st Mar
Duration: 60 min
16 - 21; 23 - 28; Feb: 6:30pm
2 - 4; 6-7; Mar: 8:00pm
9 - 14; 16 - 21 Mar: 8:00pm
5; Mar: 8:30pm
20 - 21; 27 - 28 Feb: 3:00pm
7, 14, 20 - 21 Mar: 3:00pm
General Admission: $30
Group (6+): $27
Bank SA: $23.25
Mid Week Treat: $25
Double Your Applause: $60
Venue: The Arch
34 Holden Street, Hindmarsh SA 5007
FREE PARKING AVAILABLE
HST are making every effort to make our performances accessible to all patrons. Accessible seating is available in The Arch.
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