Dystopian western comes to Whyalla

BONE DRY: Catherine Fitzgerald is bringing DRY to Whyalla next month. Photo: supplied.
BONE DRY: Catherine Fitzgerald is bringing DRY to Whyalla next month. Photo: supplied.

DRY, a new play by Catherine Fitzgerald, is about an industrial town where the city meets the sea - a setting which is familiar for those who live in Whyalla.

The dystopian western centres on two sisters who are the last inhabitants of a once thriving community, and defiantly refuse to leave their family homestead on the outskirts.

Ms Fitzgerald said the play, which is coming to the Middleback Arts Centre in November, was directly inspired by those living in the outback towns of regional South Australia.

"I love to create work that is not only highly theatrical but also interrogates our responsibility to each other and to the environment, and that celebrates the joy of being alive," she said.

"I enjoy experimenting with form so that I can marry it with content in a way that I hope touches people and allows them to question the world in which we live and hopefully will be spurred to engage, think and act.

"That's what I'm aiming for with DRY."

Adelaide-based, landscape photographer Alex Frayne, whose images have been recognised internationally, is DRY's resident photographer.

His photography of the South Australian outback will be creatively projected throughout the performance as the outback becomes a fourth performer.

Catherine Fitzgerald is a highly-respected local South Australian writer, director and actor known for her work with Adelaide's theatre companies and festivals.

She also spent many years living and working with arts communities in regional South Australia.

In 2020 she welcomed theatre back to Adelaide after the initial COVID lock-down as director of State Theatre Company's Gaslight when it was the opening event at the beautifully refurbished Her Majesty's Theatre.

The mainly South Australian cast and crew also includes Fitzgerald as director, dramaturg Patricia Cornelius (VIC); composer Catherine Oates, set and costume designer Gaelle Mellis, lighting and AV designer Nic Mollison with performers Eileen Darley, Caroline Mignone and Stephen Tongun.

DRY is coming to the Middleback Arts Centre on Wednesday, November 10 at 7pm. It's showing in Port Augusta at the Lea Memorial Theatre from 7pm.

For bookings visit www.countryarts.org.au.