Blog A Strategic Plan @ Griffin Theatre Company

A Strategic Plan @ Griffin Theatre Company

Posted Feb. 12, 2017, 2:45 p.m. by T

A Strategic Plan
Griffin Theatre Company
Sydney, AUS
Until March 11, 2017

Griffin Theatre Company is an Australian theatre specialising in new writing, based in Sydney. It is the resident theatre company at the SBW Stables Theatre in Kings Cross and the only professional theatre company in Sydney entirely dedicated to the development and production of new Australian writing for the stage.

During its inception, Griffin Theatre became more and more aware of the amount of Australian writing talent available and eventually the decision was made to adopt an all-Australian policy.

With small grants from New South Wales and Commonwealth funding bodies, the Company kicked off in 1982.

Fast forward almost four decades, with funding to the arts sector facing devastating cuts, subsequently causing Griffin Theatre’s scaling down of 2017s program, and voilà, the fragile arts sector is sitting on a precipice fraught with the possibility of collapse with Australia seemingly way behind other countries in both acknowledging and promoting arts industries as well as their subsequent influences on education, cultural capital, global relevance and a much simpler but less measurable statistic – public stability, health and happiness.

Set in a not-for-profit organization run by hobbyists, Ross Mueller’s satirical play A Strategic Plan is inspired by the dichotomy between the free spirited, passionate, creative realm of the art world fueled by goodwill of enthusiasts versus the administrative, soulless professional bureaucracy of pen pushers that treat it as a disposable commodity and the oxymoron of the latter with their adherence to rigid guidelines stymieing in its infancy what they are supposed to nurture.

A scenario all too familiar to anyone who has ever ventured into the arts sector and struggled with maintaining artistic integrity against monetary exploitation, based on individuals with competing agendas, confronted with the often poignant, foolishness that plagues the overregulated, form-filling administrative 9-to-5 world, with its clichéd parlance.

Set as a painfully well-observed satire against this office life, it comes with the territory that the characters are somewhat familiar and fit in with well-worn stereotypes, which are at times coloured with a broad brush at the expense of complexity, yet never The Office-esque cartoonish.

It is a wordy piece, with overlapping text and heavy, at times overly ambitious and high-volume dialogue.

Director Chris Mead manages to negotiate the transitions and journey between five different timeframes between past and present, which are blending into another, by utilizing music and lighting.

It appears as if the play has gone through quite a bit of restructuring to refine the effect and ensure comprehensibility for the audience.

The ensemble, spearheaded by Justin Smith, who manages in his role as a passion driven manager of a not-for-profit youth music venture to infuse the play with subtle notes of melancholy, is a tightly knit, well-oiled unit with great timing and engaging conversational rhythm based on clash of personalities. Nuances that are amplified by Matt Day’s sleazy portrayal of the board chair, Briallen Clarke’s radiating yet subtle presence and Emele Ugavule’s well measured delivery.

A Strategic Plan is a dark comedy, however, it is not merely a funny play as it also genuinely highlights the opposition and daily struggles one has to put up with once you have decided to take the road less traveled and live a life of your own.

Leave a comment
Share this content

Other recent blogs

Artisans in the Gardens Exhibition

Posted by T
Oct. 14, 2017, 9:18 a.m.

Artisans in the Gardens Exhibition Lion’s Gate at the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney October 13, 2017 Foundation and Friends of the Botanic Gardens is a not-for-profit membership based organisation supporting ... read more

Napalm Death @ Factory Theatre

Posted by T
Oct. 13, 2017, 8:18 a.m.

Napalm Death Factory Theatre Sydney, Australia October 11, 2017 Extreme times demand extreme responses. After successful runs in the USA and Europe, the intemperate Napalm Death and BRUJERIA conglomerate were heading south to ... read more

Greek Film Festival - Leichhardt

Posted by T
Oct. 12, 2017, 9:04 p.m.

Greek Film Festival Palace Cinemas Leichhardt October 10-22, 2017 The Delphi Bank 24th Greek Film Festival set out to celebrate Greek-Australian filmmakers with festival guests Sotiris Dounoukos and Mary Zournazi and ... read more

Queens of the Stone Age Bring the Heat to Colorado

Posted by Kevin Fitzpatrick
Oct. 11, 2017, 2:21 p.m.

Queens of the Stone Age and Royal Blood Red Rocks Amphitheatre Morrison, Colorado 10.10.2017   It wasn't looking good. In typical Colorado fashion, following a summer-like 76° Sunday, mother nature ... read more

Pinot Palooza - A Touring Pinot Noir Festival

Posted by T
Oct. 9, 2017, 5:30 p.m.

Pinot Palooza - A Touring Pinot Noir Festival Sydney Carriageworks October 8, 2017   Looking for a near perfectly orchestrated and curated, traveling and rocking Pinot Noir experience without pretentious ... read more

x

Logo

Looking for the SPB logo? You can download it in a range of styles and colours here:

Click anywhere outside this dialog to close it, or press escape.