Acclaim for THE ASPIRATIONS OF DAISE MORROW, with design by Michael Hankin

October 21st, 2015 by Sarah Louden

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Chris Drummond’s production of THE ASPIRATIONS OF DAISE MORROW has opened at the Adelaide Festival Centre, with design by Michael Hankin. An adaptation of Down at the Dump, the classic short story by Patrick White, this production opens on the friends and family who have gathered for the funeral of Daise Morrow, a free spirit who scandalised the staid residents of her tiny Australian town.

Hailed as a “beautifully crafted” and “visually captivating” production (Murray Bramwell, The Australian), reviews have particularly praised Michael’s design for transforming the theatre space into an outback Australian landscape, with Ben Brooker of Australian Book Review saying:

“Michael Hankin’s in-the-round set… is a gorgeous, sensory evocation of White’s Australia. Underfoot is an expanse of real grass, sprinkled with leaves that crackle as the actors weave their way in and out of the circles of folding chairs in which the audience is seated. Overhead, stretched across the ceiling and fading into an existential blackness at its edges, is a vast, off-white canvas of sky… A smell like linseed oil hangs in the air, recalling weekend cricket and the thick yet faintly sweet atmosphere of a typical suburban shed. The feel, ultimately, is a communal one, warm and welcoming, like a town hall gathering to which we’ve all been invited to discuss some pleasingly unimportant matter.”

Samela Harris of The Barefoot Review has also praised Michael’s design for brilliantly evoking the feeling of a small country town, saying, “[It’s] a large world narrowed so carefully by designer Michael Hankin. If ever there was an award-worthy design, this is it”.

THE ASPIRATIONS OF DAISE MORROW plays at Space Theatre in the Adelaide Festival Centre until 24th October. Tickets are available on the BASS website.