Conviction presented by Darebin Arts Speakeasy and The Zoey Louise Moonbeam Dawson Shakespeare Company

Published by: PBP | 13-Jul-2016
Darebin Arts Speakeasy and The Zoey Louise Moonbeam Dawson Shakespeare Company present the world premiere of CONVICTION. Written by Zoey Dawson. Director and Dramaturge Declan Greene. 23 July - 6 August, 7.30pm - Northcote Town Hall
Venue: Northcote Town Hall
Address: 189 High Street Northcote
Date: 23 July - 6 August 2016
Time: 7.30pm
Ticket: Full $35, Conc $30, Groups 4 or more $30 **Transaction Fees apply
Buy / Ticket:
Following their award-winning Melbourne Fringe hit The Unspoken Word is Joe, exciting Melbourne theatre makers Zoey Dawson and Declan Greene transport the despairing times of colonial Australia to the Northcote Town Hall from 23 July to 6 August with their latest production, Conviction.

Set on the desperate shores of colonial Australia, Conviction is the story of two convict women, played by Ruby Hughes and Caroline Lee, who disguise themselves as free settlers in the hope of another chance at life. But the arrival of Dushan Philips' as a sinister redcoat and Troy Reid as an innocent convict boy, see their plans give way to terror, self-doubt and treachery.

However, true to Zoey Dawson's beguiling, meta-theatrical style, carefully laid plans begin to crumble. Will they survive the uprising brewing outside or will they be revealed as the hackneyed imaginings of a failed playwright imploding with self-hatred?

Continuing an investigation that started with The Unspoken Word is Joe, Conviction is a caustically funny examination of contemporary feminism and self-authorship. It is a play un"“writing itself - and the authority of traditional drama - before our very eyes.

The Unspoken Word is Joe received unanimous critical acclaim, accoladed with descriptions such as "wild, unorthodox, hilarious theatre" (The Age), "Fiendishly clever, sidesplittingly funny" (Time Out) and "a major new force in Australian playwriting" (RealTime). In addition to winning the annual Melbourne Festival Discovery Award, Zoey and Declan's previous collaboration The Unspoken Word is Joe was nominated for three Green Room Awards and a Sydney Theatre Award, in a production that has since toured to Brisbane Festival, Geelong Performing Arts Centre and Sydney's Griffin Theatre, as well as selling-out three seasons at Melbourne's LaMama.

Zoey Dawson's other playwriting credits also include Welcome to Nowhere (Monash University/Malthouse), Calamity (MTC NEON/ZLMD Shakespeare), Madonna Arms (I'm Trying To Kiss You/Next Wave) and I Know There's A Lot Of Noise Outside But You Have To Close Your Eyes (I'm Trying To Kiss You/LaMama/NIDA). Her work with acclaimed collective I'm Trying To Kiss You has been described as "brilliant", "dangerously alive" and "heartbreaking" (The Age) and "disarmingly imaginative" and "tremendously affecting" (The Australian).

"This play, along with The Unspoken Word is Joe and Calamity (2015, MTC NEON) make up an unofficial trilogy of plays in which I've used my own life "“ and my experiences as a woman in theatre "“ to explore the patriarchal social structures and internalised misogyny that affects me on a daily basis. So often when women make work about themselves it is seen as self-indulgent, navel-gazing, or worse "“ therapeutic. I like to think the very act of a woman talking publicly and unapologetically about her life, her fears, her deepest shame, her greatest dreams "“ can be a political, even revolutionary, act. That might sound really serious and heavy but luckily, my obsession with ritualised self-humiliation hopefully makes these plays pretty funny, too," says Zoey about Conviction

Directing the production is Declan Greene, one half of the potent Sisters Grimm outfit, who have developed a cult following with their queer, DIY brand of theatre making, that has seen them awarded with three Greenroom Awards, two Sydney Theatre Awards and a 2015 Helpmann Award nomination. Greene has directed and co-created all their shows to date including The Sovereign Wife (MTC Neon), Little Mercy (Sydney Theatre Company), Summertime in the Garden of Eden (Theatreworks/Griffin Independent), Calpurnia Descending (Malthouse Thetre/Sydney Theatre Company) and La Traviata. As an independent playwright, he has received the Malcolm Robertson Prize, the Max Afford Playwright's Award, the AWGIE for Theatre for Young People, a Greenroom Award for Best New Original Work and has been twice awarded by the R.E. Ross Trust. He is Resident Artist at the Malthouse Theatre.


Written by Zoey Dawson
Director and Dramaturge Declan Greene Set and Costume Design Romanie Harper Lighting Design Amelia Lever-Davidson Sound Design James Paul Producer Anastasia Ryan Stage Management Kate Brennan

Cast Troy Reid, Ruby Hughes, Caroline Lee and Dushan Phillips


SEASON: 23 July - 6 August, 2016 (Thursday 21 and Friday 22 July "“ previews)
TIME: 7.30pm
LOCATION: Northcote Town Hall, Main Hall 189 High Street Northcote
COST: Previews $25, Full $35, Conc $30, Groups 4 or more $30 **Transaction Fees apply
BOOKINGS: (03) 9481 9500 or
DURATION: 70 minutes no interval
Warnings: Coarse language, adult themes, simulated violence. Not suitable for children

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