Erica Lovell will make her directorial debut at the Pioneer Theatre on Saturday, November 24, as part of the Pioneer Play Festival.
The up-and-coming director is bringing to the stage Felix Nobis’, Boy Out of the Country.
Written in the poetic style of the renowned bush poet, Banjo Paterson, this funny, fast-paced and darkly observant play tells the story of sibling rivalry, deep family secrets, and the unavoidable urban sprawl and social change.
Lovell said she chose the iconic Aussie melodrama as her directorial debut as it resonated deeply with her sense of “self and upbringing”.
“I grew up in regional, or less-metropolitan areas, spending my childhood in Hobart and my teens on the Central Coast. Both have experienced quite extraordinary growth and development,” she said.
“Every time I go back to either place, something has changed, something has been lost, and also something has been gained. It’s bittersweet.
“And that’s what this play is about.
“In a lot of ways this play is my story. It’s a searching for home, trying to pin it down, and having to accept that even the most stable things in life – the family home, that tree I loved, my grandparents’ presence – morph and shift and evolve and erode,” she added.
Lovell said the show would appeal to most audiences.
“Most Australians have witnessed the urban sprawl and lost something to it, including a park, a school, a view,” she said.
“Metamorphosis is very much in our identity.
“We are in chrysalis,” she added.
Lovell has always had a penchant for the performing arts.
And it appears the desire to pursue a career in the creative arts industry runs in the family.
“My grandmother was a ballerina and she met my grandfather in the theatre, who was lighting the show,” she said.
“I played piano and violin as a child, and went to clowning lessons, circus, and ballet. In high school I fell in love with musicals and Shakespeare.
“It’s in my blood,” she added.
You can catch Lovell’s first play during the Pioneer Play Festival (Friday, November 23, and Saturday, November 24) at the Pioneer Theatre.