Scroll down to view details of the productions featured in the Showcase Victoria 2018 program. Click on an individual profile to view full details.
Urban Theatre Projects
You couldn’t get a more perfect setting for the story – a pregnant moon, a sky that felt like it was on the verge of busting open with summer rain… Shammas is a wonderfully expressive storyteller, with an easy, natural charisma that transfixes your attention. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll wish the story didn’t end. Dee Jefferson, Time Out (5 Stars)
Performed by the inimitable Hazem Shammas, The Tribe is a story of belonging and family, told by Bani as a small boy finding his way in a young country by recounting tales of the old. At the heart of The Tribe is Bani’s love for his Tayta, his grandmother and core presence in his life, who carries all the truths of ‘The Tribe’ – a small Muslim sect who fled to Australia from Lebanon. Performing alongside cellist and composer Oonagh Sherrard, Shammas’s Bani is like a visionary child channelling a Bedouin storyteller, captivating his audience under the stars in a suburban backyard. Based on Western Sydney writer Michael Mohammed Ahmad’s award-winning novel, The Tribe is an open invitation to listen to an Arab-Australian story from our backyard, in our backyards. The universal themes of The Tribe make this work a powerful means of connecting communities and breaking down stereotypes, and the strength of the work is its proven ability to connect. The intimate and unique staging of the show supports a personal, direct style of storytelling.
History & background
Urban Theatre Projects (UTP) embraces big ideas and universal themes to create contemporary work that reflects the voices and faces of Australia. UTP takes work out of the theatre and into the everyday, re-imagining what theatre can be. Based in Bankstown in Sydney’s south-west, the Company works with diverse artists across artforms to create site-specific and distinctive experiences that connect people across cultures, generations and geographies. UTP plays a vital role in Australia’s cultural landscape. The Company has created over 90 new Australian Australian works in its 35-year history.
Marketing selling points
- A unique evening of theatre under the stars - An intimate evening of storytelling in a suburban backyard - An Arab-Australian story that speaks across cultures and generations - Based on an award-winning novel by Western Sydney writer Michael Mohammed Ahmad who is soon to release his second novel The Lebs (published by Hachette) - Performed by Hazem Shammas soon to be seen in the SBS mini-series Safe Harbour. Shammas has performed with Australia's leading theatre companies including Belvoir, Bell Shakespeare, Griffin Theatre Company and State Theatre Company of South Australia.
Key audience and marketing notes
The Tribe is a work for theatre audiences. Those who are interested in contemporary Australian storytelling will come to see this show. At it's heart, it is a story about family, so it has broad audience appeal. The show will also appeal to audiences who enjoy and seek out unexpected and unique theatrical experiences as it offers them the chance to experience intimate storytelling in a neighbourhood backyard. The Tribe offers presenters the opportunity to connect with diverse and potentially new audiences in their area given it's an Arab-Australian story.
Community Engagement activities
The community engagement process in the lead up, through the call out for backyards, has proven to be an effective tool in establishing relationships with local community members. UTP works closely with the Presenter to support them through this process and share key learnings from previous presentations. UTP can offer a range of workshops and masterclasses with the two performers. These can be tailored based on the needs of the Presenter.
What is this?
|Theatre formats||The Tribe is designed as an intimate, outdoor experience – in a backyard or small civic park, with the audience seated on picnic blankets, stools, chairs or benches. Can also be performed in a Black Box.|
|Bump in (hours)||4|
|Bump out (hours)||2|
Presenter to supply: 7 x Fluorescent batons 1 x 4pack lighting desk 8 x 50w Birdies All necessary cables
Presenter to provide: 1 x Wireless Microphone 1 x Microphone Stand 2 x Speaker stereo setup 2 x Speaker stands 2 x Monitor speakers (fold back) 1 x LXR to JACK cable or Adaptor Company to supply: 1 x Cello 1 x Laptop running sound effects for Cello 1 x Laptop running Qlab 1 x Motu Sound interface 1 x 8 Channel sound mixer with Aux and FX
The Tribe is designed as an intimate, outdoor experience – in a backyard or small civic park, with the audience seated on picnic blankets, stools, chairs or benches. For an outdoor presentation, the following is required: Presenter to supply: 1 x Chair for Cello player 1 x Outdoor bench 1 x Outdoor wooden table 1 x Rostra for Cello player – (Site-specific. Only if height is required) 1 x Milk crate AUDIENCE AND SEATING Array of seating at varying heights to maximise visibility for 60-100 audience members, including picnic blankets, milk crates, stools, chairs and benches.
Stage dimensions (meters)
|Width: 5||Height: 2|
|Depth: 3||Wing space: 0|
Site Requirements: • Access to power • Driveway access to backyard Ideal but not mandatory: • Awning for cellist • Access to backyard toilet • Access to backyard laundry or area for ‘green room’ • Access to garage/shed to store equipment overnight.
Company and equipment can travel in a 8 seater people mover. The production elements that the company tours with can travel by plane.