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Night Reflections


In 1927, Melbourne's great art critics say modernism is as healthy as leprosy, Picasso is a pervert and Van Gogh a freak, while Clarice Beckett paints and paints and tries to make sense of it all.

Clarice Beckett belonged to one of the most interesting groups of artists and intellectuals in Australia. She was a true modern artist. Ahead of her time, she translated the spirit of nature into visual abstractions. Critics slammed her works and few were sold. Misunderstood, she couldn't be categorised, so she was ignored. Painting in a night storm in 1935, Clarice caught a cold, leading to double pneumonia. She died in hospital five days later, without the will to put up a struggle.

Today only a few traces of her remain. She is remembered as a phantom, scaling the Beaumaris cliffs at first light, inhabiting the cracks of history. 



‘Melita Rowston’s strength in this and other productions is her ability to find theatricality and powerful images from literature and history. In a rare and successful blending of mediums, Melita Rowston has found grace, admiration and beauty in the telling of Clarice Beckett’s story and it’s realisation on stage.’  LOWDOWN



Writer/Director: Melita Rowston
Set Design: Anna Illic

Costume Design: Chandice Bowles
Lighting Design: Allan Hirons
Sound Design: Nicole Robinson

Dramaturg: Noelle Janaczewska
Production Manager: Stephen Davey
Stage Manager: Anna Kosky

Felicity Barrow, Zoe Houghton, Lauren Steenholdt, Jacob Allen, Robert Kennedy

NIDA Theatre, December, 2000

This project received dramaturgical support from Playworks - National Centre for Women Performance Writers

Night Reflections was first developed at the Melbourne University Theatre Department and performed in 1998 at The Guild Theatre, University of Melbourne

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