Celebrated Australian trio Splintergroup showcase incredible physicality and inspired storytelling harvested from myths and paranoia of the outback
Choreographed by Gavin Webber, Grayson Millwood and Sarah-Jayne Howard, the trio of collaborators who currently comprise Splintergroup, roadkill is set in Australia’s legendary and treacherous outback. A couple are stranded with a car that won’t start next to a phone booth that doesn’t work with a mobile phone out of range. The vast and unforgiving outback offers them little salvation, until a stranger comes along who seems all too eager to help. Splintergroup brings exceptional physicality to the stage in this work that explores dark and terrifying themes.
With a cinematic feel, roadkill surveys both the hyper-realized folklore of the outback and the realities of being stranded in it’s almost limitless emptiness. Drawing on similar themes from news headlines – such as the recent and infamous Falconio case wherein an Australian man was convicted of murder and assault on a couple travelling through the outback – and the horror film genre, such as the 2005 film Wolf Creek, roadkill is a gripping foray into the psychology of isolation in the midst of imminent danger.
Splintergroup boast unorthodox movement and an arsenal of wildly inventive choreography, notably demonstrated with the use of the couple’s car – a red Toyota which sits centre stage throughout the show – as the site of many dazzling and innovative performance feats. The much heralded sound design of Luke Smiles’ sinister soundtrack adds to the unnerving drama, and the clever lighting design from Mark Howett creates a spine-chilling environment where the audience never knows what lies beyond the dark edges of the stage.
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Choreographed by Splintergroup
Produced by Brisbane Powerhouse and Dancenorth
Feb. 3 – 6, 8 p.m. Enwave Theatre, 231 Queens Quay West, Toronto
Creative Team Choreographers: Gavin Webber, Grayson Millwood & Sarah-Jayne Howard
Performers: Gavin Webber, Grayson Millwood & Gabrielle Nankivell
Dramaturg: Andrew Ross
Sound Design: Luke Smiles / motion laboratories
Lighting Designer: Mark Howett
Rehearsal Director: Michelle Ryan
Stage Manager: Melanie Dyer
Production Manager: Liam Kennedy
Complete information about performance times, single tickets, packages and the Performance Card ($15 tickets for arts workers and students, Tues. – Thurs. performances only) is available through the Harbourfront Centre box office by phone at 416-973-4000, or harbourfrontcentre.com/
Harbourfront Centre’s World Stage 2009-10 gratefully acknowledges the support of Department of Canadian Heritage, Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council and Westin Harbour Castle, the official hotel of World Stage.