by John Hodge
4 June – 6 July
“It’s man verses monster. And the monster always wins.”
Moscow 1938. Not the best place to have a sense of humour, let alone a yearning for freedom.
So when prominent Russian writer, Mikhail Bulgakov, living among dissidents and hounded by the secret police, is given a surprise commission to pen a biographical drama about Joseph Stalin to celebrate his 60th birthday, he soon discovers there is a high price to pay.
In real life, Bulgakov’s work was regularly banned, but his play The White Guard was one of Stalin’s personal favourites. Inspired by this historical fact, Collaborators plunges into the frenzied imagination of the writer as he loses himself in a bizarre and disturbingly funny ‘role-reversal’ relationship with the dictator of the Soviet Union.
As the surreal fantasy plays out as a relentless psychological game of cat-and-mouse, the compromises and humiliations inflicted on artists by those in power are thrown into sharp relief.
This clever satire is a pointed look at the role and value of the artist in a totalitarian society.
Winner: 2012 Olivier Award for Best New Play
“Daring in its comedy, original and hugely entertaining” The Independent on Sunday
Director Moira Blumenthal
Previews 4 & 5 Jun 7:30pm
Opening Night Thu 6 Jun 7:30pm
Thu – Sat 7:30pm
Sat 6 Jul 2pm only
Concession, Groups (6+) $30
New Theatre Members $22 (with promo code)
Previews, Thrifty Thursdays $20
Main image: © Sahua/Dreamstime.com, Christina Hatzis