Pamela Rabe in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Roslyn Packer Theatre, Apr 29-Jun 8)
By Tennessee Williams
Director: Kip Williams
This is the big classic for the year, and it’s being directed by Kip Williams, who won a Helpmann Award the last time he directed a Tennessee Williams play (Suddenly, Last Summer). If you don’t know anything about Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, it’s an explosive drama about a Southern family at loggerheads with each other. And it’s difficult to imagine a much more impressive cast: The Book of Mormon’s Zahra Newman will play Maggie the Cat opposite Hugo Weaving as Big Daddy and Pamela Rabe as Big Mama.
Kip Williams: “This, for me, really is a play about the family being a political institution. A place of power navigation, and where that institution can regulate people and censor people, and make people feel controlled, stuck and disconnected from their own autonomy. And it’s a play about lies, and it’s a play about truth, and I think in the times in which we’re living where the notion of truth, both in a societal sense and in an interpersonal sense, seems to be debated on an everyday basis, this play feels like it really sings with a contemporary resonance.”
A family’s fight to survive
Big Daddy is dying. Big Mama is in the dark. Brick is at the bottom of a bottle. But Maggie is alive, desperately alive, and dancing like a cat on a hot tin roof.
Tennessee Williams’ classic play is set on a steamy night in the Mississippi Delta. It’s Big Daddy’s birthday. He’s built his family an empire of 12,000 acres, but that won’t help him beat cancer. Brick, the favourite son, is a golden boy drinking himself into oblivion, while his wife Maggie claws at him for a moment of affection. All the while, lies are rife and the family’s future is at stake.
The incomparable Hugo Weaving will play Big Daddy, Pamela Rabe returns as Big Mama following her Helpmann Award-winning performance in The Children, and Zahra Newman (The Book of Mormon) will give us a Maggie the Cat not to be missed. Artistic Director Kip Williams brings us a bold, boozy, sexy night of Southern fireworks.
Production Patron Gretel Packer
Cat In A Hot Tin Roof
Photos by Rene Vaile
Cat On A Hot Tin Roof (Rehearsals)
Photos by Sydney Theatre Company