The Collected Works of Victor Bergman



4 – 14 December 2014 . Fortyfive downstairs

‘I never want to see you again.
I never want to see you again.
I never want to see you again.

…call me back.’

Once upon a time in Romania, Aaron Orzech and his girlfriend met a strange and powerful man named Victor Bergman. The next day, he married them in the village of Voroneț. By the third day, he was gone, but for days and weeks and months afterwards he haunted Aaron’s life.

Performed by Brian Lipson and Aaron Orzech, The Collected works of Victor Bergman is the debut work by The Family. It begins with Aaron’s real life encounter and tumbles into a nightmare world of paranoid fantasy. Integrating stories, photographs, and interviews, the work explores the intrusion of a stranger into a person’s psyche.

The Family is a new theatre company created by Aaron Orzech and Romanie Harper. This show is conceived by Aaron Orzech, Romanie Harper, Zoey Dawson, James Paul, Katie Sfetkidis and Brian Lipson





Madonna Arms

1 – 11 May 2014
Meat Market, Arts House

From the treadmill to the taco truck, Madonna Arms follows the internal struggle of chaos, terror and hope as one woman attempts physical transformation. Madonna Arms is a fantastical exploration of the ways in which power, strength and fitness live and die in the bodies and psyches of young women.

Absurd and ultimately heart-wrenching, this inspired performance work provides an insight into a dangerous cultural logic we have learnt to accept as part of our everyday lives – as futile and devastating as war.

“Romanie Harper’s fittingly spectacular design unites these vignettes – aided by Katie Sfetkidis’ space-age lighting and a blockbuster soundscape by Claudio Tocco.” The Age

Madonna Arms
By I’m Trying To Kiss You
Presented by the 2014 Next Wave Festival and Arts House

Written by Zoey Dawson, Anna McCarthy & Allison Wiltshire
Directed by Allison Wiltshire
Featuring Zoey Dawson, Anna McCarthy & Ella Harvey
Produced by Bek Berger
Sound and Composition: Claudio Tocco
Set & Costume: Romanie Harper
Lighting: Katie Sfetkidis
Video: Romanie Harper & Andre Vanderwert
Stage Manager: Ainsley Kerr
Assistant Stage Managers: Leticia Brennan-Steers & Debbie Yew
Additional vocals by Marrianne Pierce

Image by Theresa Harrison
Photos by Sarah Walker and Pipper Huynh

The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant


THE BITTER TEARS OF PETRA VON KANT tells the story of a damaging and emotionally brutal love affair between a fashion designer and her female muse and model.

Photos by Piper Huynh and Sarah Walker

Petra Von Kant lives with her personal assistant, Marlene, in a sadistically co-dependent relationship in which she exerts a casual power. Recently divorced , Petra displays a growing hardness towards love and a repulsion towards men and the domestic aspects of relationships. When Petra is introduced to a much younger woman, Karin, she is taken by surprise at the immediacy of her attraction to her. She quickly takes Karin under her wing and offers to help her build a career as a fashion model.

Petra quickly becomes besotted with Karin and they begin a passionate and unstable affair. The younger Karin exerts a natural power over the increasingly desperate Petra; the casual insouciance of her youth tortures Petra to the brink of self-loathing and madness.

Fassbinder’s preoccupations with the themes of love, mortality, sexuality, power and vanity are all on display in this seminal work from the renowned German film maker and playwright. We are forced to intimately watch as Petra is destroyed by the affair and, like her assistant Marlene, we are powerless help.

Produced by Dirty Pretty Theatre and directed by Gary Abrahams THE BITTER TEARS OF PETRA VON KANT provides a welcome return to the festival for the team who brought audiences the critically acclaimed ACTS OF DECEIT (BETWEEN STRANGERS IN A ROOM) as part of the Midsumma Festival in 2010.

Cast:  Fantine Banulski, Luisa Hastings Edge, Uschi Felix, Anna May Samson, Nikki Shiels, Joanne Trentini

Director:  Gary Abrahams
Set Designer: Romanie Harper
Costume Designer : Chloe Greeves
Lighting Designer:  Katie Sfetkidis
Sound Designer: Chris Wenn

Venue: Theatre Works

Date: 29 Jan 2014 – 08 Feb 2014
Time: Wed-Sat 8pm, Tue 6.30pm, Sun 5pm & Sat 3pm matinee
Preview: Wed 29 Jan at 8pm


The Sovereign Wife

sov wife

11 – 21 July, Lawler Studio, MTC


Moira and Connor O’Flaherty leave County Mayo for a better life in the Australian goldfields. But all they find in the harsh soil of Ballarat is poverty and heartbreak. As the Eureka flag is raised, Moira makes a terrible pact in order to save her family. The effects of this one night will be felt for generations.

Spanning one hundred and fifty years of toil, hardship, and devastating etcetera, The Sovereign Wife is one woman’s epic journey across our sunburnt country – from country Victoria all the way to the Simpson Desert.

Taking inspiration from The Man From Snowy River, Baz Luhrmann’s Australia, and the spellbinding artwork of Ken Done, it is a wild bush-doof through our national identity.

After vivisecting the Civil-War melodrama (Summertime in the Garden of Eden) and Evil-Child horror films (Little Mercy), DIY drag–theatre troupe SISTERS GRIMM are set to tackle their biggest challenge yet: the Great Australian Frontier Epic.





Paul Blenheim
Joseph Chetty
Jason De Santis
Ash Flanders
Genevieve Giuffre
Felix Ching Ching Ho
Shiralee Hood
Morgan Maguire
Peter Paltos

Director – Declan Greene
Writers – Ash Flanders and Declan Greene
Set Design – Romanie Harper
Costume Design – Owen Phillips
Sound Design and Composition – Jed Palmer
Lighting Design – Katie Sfetkidis
Stage Manager – Harriet Gregory
Assistant Stage Manager – Anastasia Ryan
Assistant Costume Design – Celeste Macleod
Dramaturgy – Nakkiah Lui
Producer – Bek Berger
Photo by Theresa Harrison

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.