DoubleSpeak: Silent and Being Silenced

Theatre, Drama
Photograph: Aaron Walker

After an acclaimed season at Melbourne Fringe, the DIG Collective reprise their thought-provoking piece on the limitations of language in our political climate

As the election draws closer, the influence of language in public dialogue – used by politicians, the media and individuals – becomes increasingly powerful and problematic. Why is it that a politician can appear to speak, yet not say anything at all? And how can it be that two people can engage in a conversation, and yet not really make themselves heard and understood?

In this play, performed at the Footscray Community Arts Centre as part of its Art and Activism month, experimental contemporary theatre company DIG Collective will delve into the concept of doublespeak, in connection to Australian public dialogue.

In this tight two-person piece, Dana and Michael recount the events of the night of the election. Michael’s evening at a Thornbury mansion doesn’t go as planned, and Dana, on holiday in Spain, feels isolated from the events that will change her life forever. Throughout the performance, they tell and retell their experiences – experiences that were defined by language getting in the way.

In the week leading up to the show, the DIG Collective set up a ‘public office’ in Footscray, where they invited members of the local community to have their say on their own public space, and the way that language includes or excludes them. Some of them have recorded messages that will appear during the performance.

Central to the DIG Collective is their commitment to accessibility. They’ve created their own audio description technology which will be available on both nights.

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