Long Tan by Verity Laughton
On a hot, rain-sodden afternoon in 1966, in the glutinous mud of a rubber plantation in Phuoc Tuy Province, South Vietnam, 108 Australian soldiers clashed with approximately 2,500 North Vietnamese troops. In the ensuing battle, 18 Australians were killed and more than 245 North Vietnamese.
Long Tan brings together a cast of 12 South Australian actors in an immersive audio-theatre production that will parachute audiences into the soldiers’ experience – gunfire, mortar fire, pounding rain, insect clouds, screams and sudden silence – all orchestrated with sonic intensity to capture the pandemonium and entrapment under fire.
Adelaide’s acclaimed Brink Productions (When the Rain Stops Falling) will create this theatrical event from a semi-verbatim text by award-winning playwright Verity Laughton. Composed from interviews with the surviving Australian soldiers, Vietnamese contributors and family and friends of those who died, Long Tan isn’t simply a work about a contentious time and iconic battle. Rather, it’s a meditation on the fractures in collective memory, the consequences of extreme demands on human beings in military conflict, and the need for forgiveness, empathy and faith in our common humanity.
WRITER Verity Laughton DIRECTOR Chris Drummond COMPOSER AND SOUND DESIGNER Luke Smiles DESIGNER Wendy Todd LIGHTING Chris Petridis AV EXHIBITION Malcolm McKinnon CAST David Andri, Stuart Fong, Patrick Graham, Matthew Gregan, Antoine Jelk, Patrick Klavins, Nic Krieg, Guy O’Grady, Chris Pitman, Mémé Thorne, Elijah Valadian-Wilson and Taylor Weise
WORLD PREMIERE originally presented by Brink Productions in association with the Adelaide Festival Centre and the State Theatre Company of South Australia
31 March - 8 April
Space Theatre, Adelaide Festival Centre