Developing and nurturing new Australian works of music theatre
Our Inaugural Project
The Be New Writing Workshop 2022
Our Be New Project in 2022 was a 15-week program focusing on developing 5 shows, each at different stages of their evolution. We shared songs and scripts between our writers and facilitators, and used a structured framework to assist our writers in exloring and evaluating their creations.
3-hour sessions once a week for 12-weeks, split into two blocks of 6 weeks with a 3 week break in the middle.
Collaboration with creatives and mentors, with teams or individuals at the helm.
The opportunity for table reads and stand-and-sing sessions.
It Never Was a Phase, Kid
It Never Was a Phase, Kid written by Alex Langdon, has been in development for a number of years and has been a passion project for Alex throughout its many iterations. In selecting shows for this inaugural Be New workshop program, we were so impressed with the integrity and authenticity of the human connections explored in this show.
Welcome to 2008! School sucks, life’s a bitch, but at least there’s only 9 hours left on your limewire download of Fall Out Boy’s new album. For socially outcast BFFs Blair and Ellie, at least there’s only three more years of homework, P.E. and bullies to suffer through.
This Means War!
This Means War!, written by Zoë Harlen is a joyful, comedic story of one family’s desperate fight to defend the place they call home. Keeping it in the family, in more ways than one, this story is the musical theatre reimagining of a juvenile fiction book written by her father, Jonathan Harlen, called ‘The Cockroach War’.
What stood out about Zoe’s show to the facilitation team was the beautiful line she walks between sincerity and absurdity. I believe we described it as Roahl Dahl’s Matilda meets The Castle.
The White Rose
Oliver Thomson and Isabella Dymalovski
The White Rose, written by Oliver Thomson and Isabella Dymalovski is based on a true story of a group of young German students caught in the middle of the 2nd World War. Despite the risk, they secretly write and publish anti-nazi pamphlets and share their dissenting thoughts and opinions at great risk to themselves.
Despite being the youngest writers in our cohort, Olli and Izzy have tackled this difficult subject matter artfully and respectfully, and their genuine passion for telling the stories of these young people was one of the reasons we were so excited to bring them on board for the Be New workshop.
Lunar New Year
John Mondello, Aiden Wang, and Nicole Rammesh
Lunar New Year, written by John Mondello, Aiden Wang, and Nicole Rammesh is a deep dive into, and celebration of, asian diaspora. More importantly, it’s the exploration of what it means to find, define and embrace your cultural identity.
It’s a testament to their skill and aptitude as writers that they have managed to create a story that, while focussing on asian culture specifically, explores fundamental questions about belonging and living up to expectations.
Zombies at 6
Last, but absolutely not least, we have Zombies at 6 written by Chloe Towan. Zombies at 6 is the fresh cab off the rank when it comes to the shows involved in our workshop this year. Due to personal reasons, Chloe artfully pivoted her focus to writing a new show in the latter half of the program.
That alone is an absolute testament to her calibre as a writer, but the first reading of her extract had us in absolute stitches. The whole concept was so much fun, and we cannot wait to see where the rest of the story will go.
Speaking of concept, Zombies at 6 follows Channel 43; a less than successful broadcasting studio who are facing closure following less than stellar ratings. That is, until they become the only remaining news programme following a zombie apocalypse.
Our Facilitation Team: Harry Tibbals, Dan Aguiar, Daniele Buatti and Laura de Iongh.
Support Team: Bradley Dylan
Videography: Bec Price
Social Media and Marketing: Brendan Jelley
Rehearsal Accompanist: Sam Loomes
Guest Speaker: Deb Thomas, who contributed her hard-won wisdom and invaluable knowledge about producing independent theatre
The Be You Group Board & Ops Team
Hawthorne Community Precinct
Kew Baptist Church
An enormous thank you to all the performers who assisted us in both the mid-program readthrough and the final showcase.