Wed 8 Jan at 7.30pm
Thu 9 Jan at 7.30pm
Fri 10 Jan at 7.30pm
Sat 11 Jan at 2.00pm
Sat 11 Jan at 7.30pm
Sun 12 Jan at 2.00pm
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First published in 1979, Joan Didion’s landmark work of New Journalism The White Album was “an extraordinary report on the aftermath of the 1960s in America… brilliantly interweav[ing] her own ‘bad dreams’ with those of a nation confronting the dark underside of 1960s counterculture.
"From a jailhouse visit to Black Panther Party cofounder Huey Newton to witnessing First Lady of California Nancy Reagan pretend to pick flowers for the benefit of news cameras, Didion captures the paranoia and absurdity of the era with her signature blend of irony and insight.”
Institutional racism, disaffected youth, an anxiety-ridden populace and a puffed-up, over-privileged celebrity dominating American politics – sound familiar?
Lars Jan’s new staging of the essay juxtaposes Obie-winning actor Mia Barron reading Didion’s highly theatrical text against a “play within a play” that happens onstage behind her, giving action to Didion’s words and making comparison between the ’60s social collapse described in the essay and the living nightmare of present-day injustice and violence.
Jan expands Didion’s piercing and jaundiced observations of her world and her own mind into a brilliantly theatrical phantasmagoria of voices, attitudes, dreams and nightmares.
★★★★ "[It] preserves the original text in its entirety [but] adds an improbable dose of boisterous energy to her doom-laden reminiscences…obliquely portray[ing] a nation that is still struggling to put itself back together" – The Financial Times
"A multilayered production that radiated with a light hallucinatory touch" – The LA Times
"This elegant literary mosaic bears witness, in both its form and content, to the breakdown of the prevailing postwar American narrative" – The LA Times (on essay The White Album)
Warning - This performance contains strobe lighting, theatrical fog and portrayals of gun violence
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