87fc843425e822b7b822ec88a15fe26b.jpg

Ballarat National Theatre

PERFORMANCE DATES

Sat 27th Sept.,
Wed 1st to Sat 4th Oct at 8pm
Matinee Sunday 28th Sept. at 2.00pm

Directed and Designed by Peter Nethercote

 

CAST

Simon - LIAM MUDGE
Steve - REG MOWAT
Zena - MIRANDA DONALD
Welby - HEDLEY THOMSON
Patricia - JANE GAYLOR
Peter - JAMES McLAREN
Donald - BRIAN McCLELLAND
Sally-Anne - TIFFANY GARDINER
Ida - MARG JARVIS

And from Staffroom Two

JANETTE BAXTER, CELESTE BALDWIN,
TIFFANY GARDINER, GORDON JARVIS,
KATE PEACHEY, JOHN READ

CREW

Stage-Manager - Lou Buttler
Crew - Celeste Baldwin
Lighting -  Liam Mudge
ably assisted by, Rose Ivans
Switchboard - Marshal Woolfrey
Production Assistant - Pat Earnshaw
Sound recording - Michael Zala, Reg Mowat

REVIEW

REVIEWER - GAIL SJOGREN

A LESSON IN LAUGHTER

Everyone knows what happens in a school classroom, don’t they? But only those who have taught know what goes on behind the staffroom door!

I was a teacher for many years so when I entered the Courthouse Theatre to see Ballarat National Theatre’s production of “The Staffroom” I felt as though I had stepped back in time. The set recreates every aspect of every staffroom I have experienced. Then, as the various teachers strolled, strode and sidled into the room for the start of a new school year, I surrendered to the sense of deja-vu and lost myself in enjoyment.

The Staffroom is written by Australian playwright, Steve Wheat, and was first presented in Melbourne in 2006. Our director Peter Nethercote, himself a teacher for many years, saw it last year and immediately felt that he must bring it to Ballarat. Under his very experienced direction the ensemble cast are clearly enjoying themselves. The acting of Liam Mudge, Reg Mowat, Miranda Donald, Hedley Thompson, Jane Gaylor and Brian McClelland is so uniformly good that to single out any one of them would be quite unfair and the supporting cast is equally strong.

But it is the little familiar aspects which will have teachers, and students and parents too, chuckling happily throughout. The constant time-table changes, the yard duty rosters, the Parent-teacher interviews, the PA interruptions, and surely the most dysfunctional principal, known only by her disembodied voice, are only a few of the delightful touches.

As the school year goes on, we also become aware of some of the stresses which teachers so often face, rarely seen outside the staffroom. We see how each of them copes, their strengths and weaknesses, and cheer them on in their often demanding situations. Are some of these situations exaggerated? One can only hope so! Are they funny? Indeed they are. “The Staffroom” is highly entertaining, refreshing, energetic and truly Australian.