Playground, A New World Order

Each performance of Playground, A New World Order is only 20 minutes long and only 20 people can enjoy the experience at a time – and it may be the most fun you can have at the theatre.

How often do you get to play in the ‘theatre’?  How often do we get to play in our everyday life? I mean really play – games and stuff in a real playground made of giant wooden spools, log bridges, old tyres, ropes and lots of tan bark. Playground, A New World Order doesn’t just evoke childhood, it physically takes you back to a time when balancing and climbing were a part of daily living, running and chasing are your favourite things and strangers are instantly best friends who you are eager to share your biggest secrets with.

When was the last time you spoke with, touched and competed with 19 new people? This isn’t a passive, let the artists do their stuff performance. Within minutes of entering the space, strangers are helping each other keep their balance or jump to the ground. No one feels left out or doesn’t want to join in.

Melbourne-based collaboration Panther (Madeleine Hodge and Sarah Rodigari) create games about heroes and journeys, while making us think about our strengths, weaknesses and even how we would like to die, and playing chasing games where words, wit and quick thinking can help you win, as much as your ability to climb or hide.

Panther say that in the playground children “are the heroes and this (the playground) is their world”. For a short time, Madeleine and Sarah let us remember a time when our worlds were small, we had the confidence to overcome any problem, we be-friended people just because they were there and always felt like a hero.

Anne-Marie Peard

Anne-Marie spent many years working with amazing artists at arts festivals all over Australia. She's been a freelance arts writer for the last 10 years and teaches journalism at Monash University.

Anne-Marie Peard

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