Shake it Up

09/11/2016 – 19/11/2016

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Shake it Up

Melbourne University Shakespeare Company is thrilled to present six original radical adaptations of, or departures from, Shakespearean texts, created and performed entirely by students.

‘Shake it Up’ was conceived as a way of responding to 11 years of the Melbourne University Shakespeare Company, and 400 years of Shakespeare. Six shows are being presented, all of which use Shakespeare’s texts as points of departure to make experimental new pieces.

Featuring two separate programs over two weeks, and one special durational performance, this season promises to vivisect your favourites and sew them up again, good as new.

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9-12 November at 7:30pm – Program A
16-19 November at 7:30pm – Program B
11 November 4-6pm – Sad-Faced Men


Guild Theatre, level 1, Union House
This venue accepts companion cards



Program A OR Program B tickets: $15 conc./$20 adult
Program A AND Program B tickets: $20 conc./$25 adult

NOTE: If booking for both programs, please select the option on the Chookas ticketing website that reads “Wednesday 9th November, 2016 – Program A + B” and proceed to checkout. Once you have booked this ticket option, MUSC will contact you individually to organise which dates each week you would like to attend.

If selecting this option, please book at least 24 HOURS before the date of your first preferred performance to allow time for this process. If for any reason you need to change your preferred date of attendance, please also allow 24 hours to organise this.


Wed 9th, Thurs 10th, Fri 11th (Captioned Performance) & Sat 12th November, 7:30pm

‘And You Brutus’
Directed by Liam Bellman-Sharpe

The assassination of Julius Caesar is one of the more famous political acts in the history of the western world. In a society of people increasingly disillusioned with the systems set up to represent them, how do we recognise and respond to calls to act? Is killing our problems enough?

‘Sit On My Face’
Directed by Hanna O’Keeffe and Amy Spurgeon

How do you like it? Orally? On the Phone? With another? With a dam? Latex-free? Slow? Rough?
We like it on the stage.
We’re giving you the opportunity to watch.
Sit On My Face is a reimagining of Romeo and Juliet that seeks to strip nude the fantasy of female purity and virginity, and present instead the lived experiences of women grappling with our societies conflicting attitudes toward sex.
–pornographic breathlessness and wetness dripping thigh- trace the outline of original sin- with your tongue, with our hips, with our river of skin- unpeel me, savour me from the inside out- deglove my flesh- sit on my face–


– 16th, 17th, 18th (Captioned Performance) & 19th November, 7:30pm

Directed by Kate Weston

What if Katherina wasn’t so much a shrew as a tough bitch with a fear of commitment? Taming is a contemporary reworking of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew that places Katherina and Petruchio’s relationship in the context of BDSM. Feminist, sexy, and just a little bit kinky.

‘Let Her Hair Down’
Directed by Adelaide Greig

Everyone loves a crazy girl. The one everyone wants but no-one wants to be. Let Her Hair Down is a monologue comprising of Lady Macbeth’s, Ophelia’s and Cassandra’s mad scenes along with original writing which explores the fetishisation and flawed representations of women with mental illness in Shakespearean and contemporary society.

Directed by Jai Leeworthy

Phoenix is a literal funeral for the fictional titular characters from the little-known Shakespeare poem ‘The Phoenix and the Turtle’. The service will include ritual performances adapted from various ancient traditions and mythologies. The performances have the potential to raise the unrestful spirits of the dead, against enormous potential for failure.


Friday 11th November, 4:00pm
Meet outside the Guild Theatre from 4pm-6pm.

‘Sad-Faced Men’
Devised, Directed, Designed and Performed by Declan Mulcahy

The sum total of four years continuously working with the Melbourne University Shakespeare Company, Declan Mulcahy’s Sad-Faced Men is a collaborative developmental brainstorm session for a deeply personal and totally contemporised production of Titus Andronicus. Participants will be invited to meet with the artist one at a time to bring their own experiences and ideas to the creative process.

'And You Brutus'
Concept, Direction, and Design by Liam Bellman-Sharpe
Devised and performed by Amir Aizenstros, Charlotte Armstrong, Max Draper, Jordan Peters, Rachel Shrives, Antonia Yip, and Eunice Zēng
Thanks to Petra Kalive, Erin Adams, Gus MacDonald, Clynton Jones, Jim Stenson, Josh Lynzaat, and the team at MUSC.

'Sit On My Face'
Directed by Hanna O’Keeffe and Amy Spurgeon.
Devised and Performed by Georgie Daniels, Emily Kruse, Claire Miller, Zoë Steiner and Louise Willocx.
Set Design by Stacey You
Dramaturgy by Ebony Beaton
Av Design by Roise Pavlovic
Sound Design by Connor Ross
Thanks to the UHT office gang and the team at MUSC

Written by Kate Weston and William Shakespeare
Directed by Kate Weston
Assistant Directed by Rebecca Riggs
Stage Managed by Sara Kissel and Bella Mackey
Production Managed by Jack Murray
Performed by Siân Lewis, Eden Gonfond, Kassandra Tilly, Madeleine Kerr and Alexander Scott
Lighting Design by James O’Donoghue
Sound Design by Connor Ross
Sound Design also featuring Simon Best on bass, John Oh on guitar, Jordan Tredinnick on drums and Grace O'Connor on keys.

'Let Her Hair Down'
Written and directed by Adelaide Greig
Assistant directed by Alice Wheaton
Performed by Alexandra Turnbull

Concept, Direction and Lighting by Jai Leeworthy
Produced by Kristina Arnott
Set and Costume Design by Cera Maree Brown
Sound Design by Joshua Trappett and Jai Leeworthy
Devised and performed by Ebony Beaton, Sandra Chui, Cara Greenham, Kim Ho, Jehrome Reyes
Thanks to Arielle Cottingham, Sian Lewis, Josiah Lulham, Jean Tong, Josh Lynzaat, Adam Cass, Petra Kalive, Candy Bowers, and the team at MUSC.

'Sad-Faced Men'
Devised, Directed, Designed and Performed by Declan Mulcahy
Thanks to Liam Bellman-Sharpe, James Christensen et al.