Geelong in the 1980s was a completely different city from what it is today. Its industrial heart had started to disappear, unemployment was on the rise and Gary Ablett (senior) had just been signed to Geelong. It’s rough, troubled and the perfect setting for Melbourne Theatre Company’s new production, Astroman.
Astroman, by playwright Albert Belz, explores what it was like to be coming of age in 1980s Geelong. It follows the story of Jiembra “Jimmy” Djalu, a gifted teen who likes nothing better than hanging out at the local video game arcade. As Jimmy whiles away the summer playing Donkey Kong, listening to Michael Jackson and eating Kentucky Fried Chicken, his mother worries if he’ll ever reach his full potential. He’s a bright kid with the world at his feet but growing up in Geelong means experiencing lots of highs and lows. Will Jimmy find the strength and courage to reach for the stars?
Directed by the award-winning Sarah Goodes (The Children, A Doll’s House Part 2) and associate director Tony Briggs (The Sapphires), Astroman is a heart-warming show filled to the brim with 1980s nostalgia. Astroman is part of the Melbourne Theatre Company’s 2018 season and stars Elaine Crombie (Black Comedy), Nicholas Denton (Jasper Jones, Wild), Calen Tassone (Red Dog), Tony Nikolakopolous (Wentworth), Tahlee Fereday (Fallen) and Kamil Ellis (Bushwhacked!, Nowhere Boys, Macbeth) as Jimmy Djalu.
Astroman is on at Fairfax Studio from October 27 to December 8. Tickets are available online now.