From the collaborative work of the State Theatre Company of South Australia and the UK's Frantic Assembly comes 'Things I Know To Be True', a physical theatre depiction of the resonating story of the Price family.
To most, the Price family are one we would all know well and most certainly are a family we can all relate to. Middle-aged mum and dad and their four grown-up children (and grandchildren) face some of life's biggest challenges.
Georgia Adamson – known best for her roles in: Andrew Povell's recent adaptation of 'The Secret River'; award-winning performance of 'The Crucible'; and appearances on Australian television dramas 'Love Child' and 'A Place To Call Home' – plays the Price's oldest daughter Pip. A 34-year-old, career-driven wife and mother of two.
"['Things I Know To Be True'] is a play about family life, but it's also a play that really examines those big questions of life. Like what happiness is worth and how do the choices we make impact on our children and ourselves. It's an examination of life through the prism of looking at one family," Georgia says.
© Shane Reid
The play was developed over two years by acclaimed South Australian playwright Andrew Povell and two Directors, Geordie Brookman and Scott Graham. Together the directing duo founded inspiration from a collective admiration for a photography book depicting everyday lives by Gregory Crewdson.
However, collaborating with internationally-renowned Frantic Assembly has brought a fascinating new physical element into the award-winning work of Andrew Povell. The Assembly's unforgettable physical theatre approach supports and enriches performances through energetic physical interactions between the performers.
Though don't be fooled, the performance isn't dancing, and it certainly isn't easy. "It's about creating really strong images physically that support the text."
"The physical work is really challenging, though it's quite thrilling as well. The first hour of rehearsals everyday is an intense workout. We quite often need to change shirts at the end of that hour because we're so sweaty!
"In the play, there are times when we're lifting a performer above our heads – four of us will be holding a performer's ankles upright above our heads – and for that we need incredible aerobic and strength fitness."
© Shane Reid
That level of strength and physicality can be tough to bring onstage, so there is no doubt the audience will be left in awe of the performance. Though audiences young and old will also find the resonance of characters and plot of the 'Things I Know To Be True' just as astounding.
"[It is a] heightened physical depiction of our world, and I think you'd be hard pushed to not walk away ruminating on your own choices... Because of the beauty of Andrew's writing and because of the scale of the story, you would have to have been sitting with your eyes closed and your ears blocked to not be asking yourself those big questions decisions, happiness, settling or being true to yourself."
Georgia believes younger audiences will quickly find themselves an affinity with 19-year-old Rosie, who's beginning to make the all-too-real reflections on the challenging progression into adulthood. Though the older audiences, Georgia says, will "identify with both Pip's conundrum and the conundrum of Fran, Pip's mother."
"There's a really interesting relationship between the women, they're both adult women, they're both mothers and there's two versions of how one can proceed through that path in the same story.”
'Things I Know To Be True' performs Adelaide Festival Centre 13 May – 4 June.