Melbourne Theatre Company presents the world premiere of Alma De Groen's playThe Woman in the Window, which propels audiences from Stalin's Russia of the 1950s through to Australia in the year 2080.
Russian poet Anna Akhmatova, as an icon for her fierce resistance to the terror of the Stalinist regime, risks her life to continue writing. In a moment when the horror of Akhmatova's existence becomes almost too great to bear, she has visions of a young woman from an Australia of the future, an Australia without a sense of its history, a nation which has lost its soul. The young Australian is struggling to understand the power of language in a world dominated by technology and bureaucrats. This gives Akhmatova the conviction to keep writing, and together the two women rediscover that poetry -- not politics -- has to nurture a nation's soul.
The collision of two such worlds reminds us how fortunate we are in Australia's present and raises the question of what happens if a nation loses its soul.
Directing her first MTC production, Kate Cherry reflects "By exploring the relationship between two extraordinary women, De Groen has created a story of courage and insight. Her passion for literature and history and fascination with technology uniquely qualify De Groen to ask a vital question: what do we stand to lose in letting the uses of technology be dictated by market forces instead of what people actually value?'
The Woman in the Window runs February 25 - March 21. Venue: Fairfax Theatre Victorian Arts Centre. Bookings: 11566 Subscription Inquiries: 1800 810 256. --By Peter Kemp