For the three nights leading up to ANZAC Day, Kulin’s outdoor war memorial will come alive as stories and experiences of the men and women from the small Wheatbelt town, who found themselves coming to terms with the outbreak of World War One, are presented in a dramatic and unique production, “And Tell Mum…”.
The original theatre experience is the creation of Perth based Scooplight Theatre, who in partnership with the Shire of Kulin, will retell the impact WW1 had on their lives and their newly established farming community.
Writer/Producer for Scooplight Theatre, Helen Munt said the production was part of a vision to produce a unique and quality experience which would contribute meaningfully to the ANZAC Centenary commemorations.
“The experience is based on official and personal historical records and recollections of the people who were living in and around Kulin before, during and immediately after the war,” Ms Munt said.
This is the third time the Shire of Kulin has partnered with Scooplight Theatre. In 2013 & 2014, Kulin delivered the highly successful ‘Kulin Open Doors’ and ‘Kulin by Night’ heritage theatre experiences, which were named Winner of the 2014 WA Heritage Award for Outstanding Heritage Tourism Product. Ms Munt said that it was during these shows that the idea for "And tell Mum…”came about.
“In ‘Kulin by Night’ there was a touching scene where local boy Stan Bull and postman, Fred Johnson cross paths in Kulin’s street. Stan only realises in this scene that he in fact did not physically make it back from the war, and that Fred is on his way to deliver the dreaded telegram to his family,” Ms Munt said.
“We discovered more stories that had a direct connection to WW1 and although we were able to only briefly touch on one of these in ‘Kulin by Night", a wealth of other stories and characters had been put aside.”
Senior Project Officer at Shire of Kulin, Gen Whisson said that whilst “And tell Mum…” allowed the Kulin community to tell their own personal ANZAC story, the themes and characters would resonate across regional Australia.
“There is the teenage farm-boy determined to enlist even though he is under-age; the local German storekeeper who overnight became an enemy alien; the young teacher anxiously awaiting the return of her fiancé; the postman who delivered the telegrams with the news no-one wanted to hear; the women who took on the work of the men; the young soldier who never returned but left behind a deeply personal journal of his experience, and of course, the mother who lost her son”.
Performances will be held on the 22, 23 & 24 April 2016, under the stars in the Kulin War Memorial. Tickets are $10 pp and are available online or through the Shire of Kulin PH: 08 9880 1204. Bookings are essential.
“And Tell Mum…” is proudly supported by Lotterywest, Western Australian History Foundation, Kulin Bush Races, Kulin RSL, Kulin Community Bank and Black Cyclone Film and Production. The production is also part of the 2016 National Trust Heritage Festival Discovery and Rediscoveries, a national celebration of heritage.
Scooplight Theatre is a creative partnership between Helen Munt and Julia Jarel - who together combine the skills of writing, directing, performing, historical research, interpretation, music, film and theatre-in-education.
For further information please contact Gen Whisson, Senior Project Officer at the Shire of Kulin 08 9880 1204 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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