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"What’s your poison?"

A delicious cocktail of passion, betrayal and murder. Sugarbomb delves into the infamous Thall-Rat murders of the 1950's, exposing this dark underside of Sydney's past.


In 1953, an epidemic of poisoning is gripping Sydney and Thall-Rat is the weapon of choice. It’s colourless, odourless, tasteless and available at the corner store.


Meet Etta and Darcie Hogan, working class mother and daughter, eeking out a living in a terrace jammed between the factories of Redfern. Etta spends her days listening to radio serials, hoarding tins of fruit and feeding her passion for Wally Brennan, Rabbitohs star half-back while Darcie is a poster girl for the communist revolution.


Enter Rabbitoh’s star and local hero, Wally Brennan - Etta’s dream-come-true. After all, he’s painted on the Tooth’s posters down at the pub. But Wally is after Darcie and Wally Brennan is a man who gets what he wants - is it more than he bargained for? 


A love triangle fuelled by beer, politics and sex, they become embroiled in a web of lies and murder.


"Gorgeously presented, the acting honest and lively. Rowston’s writing is punchy and direct. Edgy kitsch comedy with a dark twist." Vibewire 

"It's the strength of the characters, in particular Etta, that in SUGARBOMB produce a lively, dark comedy with many laughs." 

The Program

"There's much to like in this production... Cat Raven's design is a triumph of authentic grime, Hammer and Pigeot are excellent. Hammer has the fiery certainty of the true believer, Pigeot is wonderful, revelling in a truly vile character who lacks a single redeeming feature. A harridan hardened by the experience of wartime deprivation, Etta is a memorable portrait of petty lust and circumstantial evil." Sydney Morning Herald



Writer/Director: Melita Rowston
Starring: Olivia Pigeot, Martelle Hammer and Matt Rainey
Design: Cat Raven
Lighting: Allan Hirons
Composer: Kent Rowston

Dramaturg: Donna Abela

Presented by glasstheatre in association with TRS at The Old Fitzroy
September 2004

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

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