2013 ~ 2014



16-26 May, 2013

Southbank Theatre, The Lawler

me·nag·er·ie | m·e'naj·ere
  1. A collection of wild animals kept in captivity for exhibition
  2. A strange or diverse collection
In a tiny derelict flat, a voracious mother, her repressed daughter and flamboyant poet son live in squalor, nourished only by competitive manoeuvring and nostalgic fantasies. You recognise this family. They have the same lost dreams and drowned sorrows as your neighbour, uncle, stepbrother. They are caged animals, wild at heart, with the American Dream - capitalism and hedonism - oozing through the seams of their imaginative worlds.

Menagerie is a new production based on the extraordinary life and work of one of the giants of the American stage, Tennessee Williams. DANIEL SCHLUSSER ENSEMBLE has built an exciting reputation for exploding the classics onto the contemporary stage with a unique sensibility and style.

M + M

World Premiere
Melbourne Festival Co-Commission with Theatre Works

8-16 October 2013 Theatre Works, St Kilda

Award-winning director Daniel Schlusser brings us his most ambitious production to date - an original work inspired by the life of Mikhail Bulgakov, his sensuous, satirical masterpiece of love and madness, The Master and Margarita, and the darkly theatrical politics of contemporary Russia.

Satan has arrived downtown. People are disappearing; men are turning into flying pigs. A young woman is ready to sell her soul to save her lover. The wicked are spared, and the good are going mad. In the hands of Melbourne's own Daniel Schlusser Ensemble, Bulgakov's anarchic vision collides with the trial of art activists Pussy Riot, and sees religion, atheism and the politics of post-capitalism combust in a frenzy of dramatic defiance.

The effect is an almost imperceptible but pitiless screwing up of anxiety; I found myself becoming more and more tense as I watched. And out of this tension evolves, with a flawless emotional logic, moments of stunning beauty that destroy the premises of theatrical representation and reach beyond them to a raw but irresistible truthfulness, a reality which exists wholly in the present moment.

- Alison Croggon