Theatre, Drama
Beth Buchanan standing in front of a train and the Melbourne Star
Photograph: Gerard Assi

Step onto a bus and experience suburban Melbourne in a whole new way on this moving theatrical journey

Who says that theatre can’t happen on the move?

Passenger is a travelling performance in which passengers are also audience members, and the familiar passing world outside becomes a new and unfriendly environment. The world unfolds slowly; as participants watch the Docklands pass by through the windows of the bus, they begin to overhear a discussion between two passengers. A female character is convincing a male character to reveal his corporate employer’s unethical practices – and as the conversation heats up, an original filmic soundtrack begins to swell. While the two characters grapple with the choice to take the law into their own hands, audiences become immersed in what has become akin to a modern-day Western; the Docklands transforming into a hostile landscape.

A co-production between Arts Centre Melbourne and Footscray Community Arts Centre (FCAC), Passenger was created by theatre-maker Jessica Wilson, alongside Melbourne artists Ian Pidd and Nicola Gunn, whose one-woman dance show Piece for Person and Ghetto Blaster is on at Malthouse Theatre until Sunday March 26, as part of Dance Massive.  

"We wanted to create an experience of theatre that is moving and set in a real landscape – something that feels like being inside the drama rather than watching it from the outside," says Wilson. "[Audiences] are still passive, like in a cinema or theatre, but the overall sensation is much more awakening and exciting."

Performances last for approximately 60 minutes, and begin and end in the same location. Thursday, Friday and Saturday performances go from FCAC, and Sunday performances go from Arts Centre Melbourne.

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