'Indigenous Theatre at Belvoir supported by The Balnaves Foundation.
'Louis Nowra’s Radiance is an exuberant black sabbath for three great Indigenous dames. It begins conventionally enough: Mae, Nona and Cressy gather at the old Queenslander in the tropics for Mum’s funeral. But these three sisters are forces of nature, and they haven’t been in the same room for years, and years. It isn’t long before that old house can’t contain the joy and pain of them all being together again…
'Radiance began its life at Belvoir in 1993. After 22 years, Nowra’s feat of playwriting – almost Shakespearean, a Tempest-like packet of lust, rage, grief and high-flying foolery – is ready to be unleashed again. Leah Purcell is the woman for the job.
'Purcell is a powerhouse. She burst onto the national stage nearly two decades ago and is as full of fight and life as she ever was. What better idea than for this all-round theatre elder to direct herself in this mighty little classic?' (2015 Production summary)
Radiance tells the story of three women who reunite, after many years apart, for their mother's funeral.
Unit Suitable For:
AC: Year 10 (NSW Stage 5). It could be used for possible extension work in Year 9 but be aware of mature themes and references: use with discretion.
This unit of work is based on the Currency edition of the play, published in 2000 and featuring an introduction by Louis Nowra. This edition also includes the screenplay of the 1997 film based on this play. Any page numbers cited in this Unit refer to this edition. This teaching resource relates mostly to the stage play although some reference is also made to the film, the study of which is encouraged.
Radiance, is an exuberant black sabbath for three great Indigenous dames. Cressy, Nora and Mae are half-sisters with little in common except the ghosts of their childhood. They gather, in the tropical Queensland landscape, for Mum's funeral.
These three sisters are a force of nature, and they haven't been in the same room for many, many years. It isn't long before that old house can't contain the joy and pain of them all being together again ...
First produced at the Belvoir Street Theatre, Sydney, 21 September 1993.
Performed at Belvoir : 3 January - 8 February 2015
By Louis Nowra
Director Leah Purcell
Set & Costume Designer Dale Ferguson
Lighting Designer Damien Cooper