The Melbourne Theatre Company’s Next Stage program is something of a godsend for Australian playwrights. Under this rubric, the company is commissioning an ongoing series of original works, and providing writers with the time, space and financial resources needed to produce those works to the best of their ability.
The latest Next Stage production is Berlin, by acclaimed playwright Joanna Murray-Smith. As the title suggests, the play is set in the German capital, and the story pivots around the city’s status as a magnet for young creative types from around the world. As the curtain rises, two such people – young traveller Tom and local bartender Charlotte – meet in the bar where the latter works. One thing leads to another, and they end up back at her apartment.
Things aren’t as simple as that, though, and as the night progresses, they learn of each other’s pasts – and of each other’s secrets. As they do, the play develops into an edge-of-your-seat romantic thriller.
Berlin stars Grace Cummings and is directed by Iain Sinclair, who also directed last year’s MTC production of A View from the Bridge.
(Remember: if you’re under 30, you can receive 50 per cent off all full-price MTC tickets and subscriptions.)
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