Presented by State Opera South Australia
Based on Ray Lawler’s 1955 Australian play by the same name, this chamber opera tells the story of a long-standing tradition at the end of the sugarcane season, in which cane-cutters Barney and Roo travel south to Melbourne for their annual fling with two city girls. But this year, the seventeenth year, is different. Gone are the larrikin summers of their youth. Instead, their reunion is full of tension, silence, and awkward attempts to hold on to their past. One girl has married; all of them struggle to come to terms with what their futures hold.
The opera was commissioned by the Victoria State Opera and premiered in 1996. Opera Australia subsequently presented the work in 1999. Lawler’s play is considered to be the most significant in Australian playwriting, marking the first time the authentic Australian voice was depicted on stage. So too does Mills and Goldsworthy’s opera express, at its heart, something heroic, fragile, and utterly moving.
Conductor Richard Mills
Director Joseph Mitchell
Designer Simone Romaniuk
Lighting Designer Trudy Dalgleish
Pearl Dimity Shepherd
Olive Antoinette Halloran
Emma Elizabeth Campbell
Roo Joshua Rowe
Barney Paul O'Neill
Bubba Desiree Frahn
Johnny Dowd Nicholas Cannon
With Adelaide Symphony Orchestra