NOMINATED BEST PHYSICAL THEATRE WORK – 2018 MATILDA AWARDS
Plunge: (verb) To bring suddenly or forcibly into some condition, situation, etc.: to plunge a house into darkness. To cast oneself, or fall into water, from a great height, etc.; plummet.
PLUNGE takes a venue that will have the world watching during the 2018 Commonwealth Games and invites audiences to look at it anew through the power of story and image. PLUNGE is an interdisciplinary, site-specific work at the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre featuring playwriting, verbatim, contemporary dance, small and large-scale projections, headphone technologies, site practice and sport itself to delve into the internal and external pressures on elite athletes and our responses to profound change.
PLUNGE is a highly sensate experience mixing intimacy with spectacle. As the audience travel across the aquatic centre, they experience is a fusion between the voices of the real people interviewed (elite swimmers, coaches, divers, learn-to-swim parents) intersected with the lives of three fictitious characters – Tom, an elite swimmer at the beginning of his career, Alex, the swimming hero on the decline and the wanna-be diver, Cassy.
Inspired by the architecture of the building, audiences view the unfolding drama from many perspectives. They look through a glass window into the tension of a pre-race marshalling room, look up at the 10m dive tower as divers flip over their heads, smell the chlorine and heated confines of the children’s pool and then watch the 50m pool from the heights of the open air stadium viewing evocative projections on the pool, on bodies and the building as they listen to a rich tapestry of sounds and voices through headphones.
PLUNGE is an exciting physical, site-specific performance about taking a leap of faith, sacrifices you make for a dream and beginning again when you fall.
Premiered 30 Aug – 2 Sept 2017 at the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre.
“Plunge is innovative theatre at its best…an extraordinary experience….The very talented writer and director, Kate Shearer, is to be commended on a production that incorporates a visual, audio and sensory experience…What a special treat.” arts.theaureview.com Review, 1 September 2017
“PLUNGE delivers its spectacle quickly and with authority… the lyrical quality of the language, the visual poetry and scale of the projected animation and the deftness of our positioning in relationship to the site…It’s mesmerising” Kathryn Kelly, REALTIME Magazine review, 13 September 2017.
AUDIENCE RESPONSE: “Highly evocative. It was gigantic and intimate at the same time.” “Loved hearing actual audio form the real athletes. I was completely immersed in the story.” “Mesmerising. It really takes you on a journey – psychological and visual”.
WATCH PLUNGE promo here. WATCH Production Stills and ABC Radio interview here. WATCH excerpt of PLUNGE here.
CREATIVE TEAM: Concept/Writer/Director: Kate Shearer AV Designer: Nathan Sibthorpe Sound Designer: Guy Webster Lighting Designer: Geoff Squires Stage Manager: Jenna Ward AV: Pixel Line Sound: Tonepacer Dramaturgical Advice: Peter Matheson Illustrator: Elizabeth Millington Follow-spot Operators: Kaytelyn & Ryan Mitchell Core collaborators/Cast: Alicia Harvie, Hayden Jones, Mitch Wood Squad Dancers: Ashleigh White,Lara Hedgcock, Abbey Kim, Idonea Van Bergen,Erin Owen Hall, Penni Reid Divers: Sanee, Charlie, Alice, Erin, Marcus and Lily – members of theParadise Diving Club.
Plunge was supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland and the Regional Arts Development Fund, which is a Queensland Government and City of Gold Coast Council partnership to support local arts and culture. Thank you to the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre, Bleached* Arts and all those who shared their stories so generously.
RESIDENCY AT YOUR AQUATIC CENTRE
The show tours with a company of professional artists that will be based at your aquatic centre for 2 weeks, as a residency. During this time we will custom make the production to your site and your community. In a be-spoke development of PLUNGE for your aquatic centre, we will train and develop site-specific skills with up to 6 young dancers, along with integrating your local dive club into the production.