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Press Releases

Melbourne Talam

10 Apr 2017

Energised with Melbourne’s urban intensity and cultural diversity, Melbourne Talam by Rashma N. Kalsie is a vibrant new play that puts our city’s contemporary social issues centre stage.

Developed as part of MTC’s NEON Festival and Cybec Electric play reading series, Melbourne Talam will receive its world premiere production on Saturday 6 May at Southbank Theatre before touring regionally in Victoria and Tasmania.

Director Petra Kalive said, ‘Melbourne Talam is a play alive with the rhythm of Melbourne. Rashma’s writing, inspired by real events, is a timely response to the world we live in. For some audiences, the lives of the characters may echo their own experience, while for others, these stories will offer a new perspective on Australian life. We have an exceptional team working on this world premiere production and can’t wait to share it with others.’

Starring Rohan Mirchandaney (Hotel Mumbai), Sahil Saluja (The Colour of Darkness), and Sonya Suares (Assassins), Melbourne Talam explores the notion of belonging through the stories of three young people from India trying to make Melbourne their home.

Jasminder, Poorna and Sonali see each other across a crowded Flagstaff station. They just missed the train. Now they wait. And think. They think about home: Punjab, Delhi, Hyderabad. And of all the seemingly impossible things they must do to stay in Melbourne. And about how they just can’t seem to get the city’s Talam – its rhythm – right. A sudden and calamitous event changes the lives of all three, and their future in Australia.

Rashma N. Kalsie is an established journalist and television scriptwriter who splits her time between Melbourne and Delhi. Her most recent play, The Rejected Girl, was short-listed in an India-wide contest for one-act plays. Rashma was formerly a participant in MTC CONNECT, a partnership between Multicultural Arts Victoria and Melbourne Theatre Company that engages talented theatre practitioners from diverse communities to build a richer arts landscape.

Through MTC CONNECT, Rashma was able to access dramaturgical support for Melbourne Talam and it was later presented at the NEON Readings program in July 2015 and further developed as part of Cybec Electric 2016.

Petra Kalive is currently Artistic Director of Union House Theatre at the University of Melbourne Student Union. Previously for MTC, Petra directed the Patrick White Award-Winning Play Beached for MTC Education,_ In the Kingdom of Cha_ for Cybec Electric and was Assistant Director on Constellations. Petra has also directed for fortyfivedownstairs (Taxhiti), La Mama, Arena Theatre Company, Complete Works, St Martins Youth Arts Centre and Monash and Latrobe University’s Performing Arts Program, and was Assistant Director on STC’s 2014 production of Macbeth. She was Co-Artistic Director of Melbourne Playback Theatre Company from 2011-2014, Dramaturg at Red Stitch in 2009-2012 and was Assistant Dramaturg at the Malthouse in 2010. Petra also works professionally as an actor, dramaturg and facilitator.


Cast Rohan Mirchandaney, Sahil Saluja, Sonya Suares

Director Petra Kalive

Set & Costume Designer Andrew Bailey

Lighting Designer Rachel Burke

Composer & Sound Designer Darius Kedros


Melbourne Season
4 – 20 May

Opening Night
Saturday 6 May, 7.30pm

Southbank Theatre, The Lawler

On sale now
03 8688 0800

Regional Tour
23 May – 9 June

Tour Destinations
Mildura Arts Centre
Lighthouse Theatre, Warnambool
Ulumbarra Theatre, Bendigo
Eastbank Centre, Shepparton
The Cube Wodonga
Geelong Performing Arts Centre
Launceston College

Published on 10 April 2017