Melville Theatre present Andrew Bovell’s ‘Things I Know To Be True’

The next production from community theatre group Melville Theatre is a play by acclaimed Australian playwright and screenwriter Andrew Bovell.

The old adage ‘Family – you can’t live with them, you can;t live without them’ accurately sums up the main themes of the play which had its debut in 2016.

Written by Bovell, who hails from Western Australia, and directed by Vanessa Jensen, Things I Know To Be True is set in suburban Adelaide and follows the Price family over the course of a year. The play was originally commissioned by the South Australian Theatre Company.

During the period the play covers, the four adult children move on with their own lives, often making decisions their parents may not have foreseen or even approve. Each of the characters share major changes occurring in their lives, including one sibling who announces their gender transition.

Bovell is most famous for his play Speaking in Tongues, adapted into the film Lantana, for co-writing the Strictly Ballroom screenplay.

“Things I Know To Be True examines family, and love, and moving on and looking back,” Jensen said.

“It has all the chaos and cohesion, loyalty and loneliness of a closeknit family.

“A friend recommended the play to me and, upon reading it, I immediately knew that, without a doubt, I just had to direct it.

“It truly is a beautiful play by an excellent playwright with honestly written characters who are easily recognisable.

“They are all lovable and yet flawed; strong and yet lost.

“I love a good, contemporary Australian drama and this one is outstanding.”

First appearing on stage as an eight-year-old at Geraldton’s Theatre Eight and directing her first show at 14, Vanessa Jensen has a wealth of theatre experience behind her.

She wrote, directed, stage-managed and acted in various shows at Curtin University’s Hayman Theatre over a four-year period and has staged a plethora of successful productions at the Old Mill and Melville Theatres, as well as various schools and American summer camps.

Jensen also has plenty of best director and best play awards and nominations to her credit for shows including Away, Jamie’s Chooks, Twelve Angry Men, Mr Bailey’s Minder, Amadeus, Rabbit Hole,Love, Loss and What I Wore and William Shakespeare’s Long Lost First Play (abridged).

With Things I Know To Be True, she is excited by her strong cast bringing to life such a high-calibre script.

“Some storylines may resonate with the audience on a personal level, some may be a little too close to home and some may be quite confronting,” Jensen said.

“But Bovell has written them with honesty and respect and, if we treat them in the same manner, they should entertain, amuse, move and hopefully initiate discussion, as intelligent theatre should.”

Things I Know To Be True plays at 8pm October 28, 29, November 3, 4, 10, 11 and 12; 5pm October 30 and 2pm November 6. Tickets are available at  Melville Theatre is at 393A Canning Highway (corner of Stock Road), Palmyra.

OIP Staff

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