The Waiting Room

15 May — 27 June 2015

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The story that divided society. The science that changed the world.

Belinda McClory, William McInnes and Greg Stone lead a talented cast in this powerful tale based on the pioneering IVF research that occurred right here in Melbourne in the late 1970s.

Kylie Trounson was a child when her father Emeritus Professor Alan Trounson made breakthrough after breakthrough in fertility research. It was 1970s Melbourne and society was divided: was he a hero? Or a mad scientist playing God? The controversy swirled so close to her, yet she was far too young to understand how much was at stake. But now she can see it plain: that when we speak about conception we speak of the most profound things, of family and faith, our lives and our mortality, and our uncertain place in Nature.

There was a world before IVF and a world after. Multi-layered and wide-ranging, The Waiting Room explores how they are not the same world. Created in collaboration with Naomi Edwards, the play received a rapturous response as part of the 2014 Cybec Electric play readings. Now Edwards makes her MTC mainstage directorial debut with this powerfully personal play, which grapples with the ordinary wonder of conceiving a child and the extraordinary heartbreak when you can’t.

Best availability: 12-27 June

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FREE Panel Discussion
An MTC and Melbourne Conversations event
Wednesday 10 June

Join playwright Kylie Trounson, her father and IVF researcher Alan Trounson and eminent medical lawyer Loane Skene for a free panel discussion and deeply personal insight into the story behind the story of IVF. Learn more

Please note: Aaron Pedersen has withdrawn from The Waiting Room due to a film offer which has competing dates. The role of Alan will now be played by Greg Stone.

Belinda McClory

Belinda McClory

Naomi Edwards

Naomi Edwards

Naomi Edwards is a theatre and opera director and arts educator. For MTC, she was Assistant Director on In the Next Room, or the vibrator play (also STC) August: Osage County, Poor Boy (also STC), Ninety (also QTC), and Don’s Party (also STC). Her directing credits include The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show (Sydney Festival); Hamlet, Actor on a Box: The Red and White Spotted Handkerchief, The Loaded Dog, Aesop’s Fables, and Tragedy Workshop (for STC Education); How to Kill Your Husband and Noye’s Fludde (Victorian Opera); The Season at Sarsaparilla, Traps, and Who’s Afraid of the Working Class (VCA); The Sound of Waves (fortyfive downstairs); Cautionary Tales for Children (Arena), Oedipus DNA (Monash University); Big Sky Town (St Martin’s); and Il re pastore (Lyric Opera of Melbourne). She was Assistant Director on Carmen, Don Pasquale, Rigoletto, and Lakme for Opera Australia and the director of Opera Australia’s touring and outreach productions of Hansel and Gretel, The Magic Flute, Cinderella, and The Barber of Seville. Her other directing credits include Actors at Work for Bell Shakespeare, and Wishes More Wishes for the ARC research project Vocal Empowerment for Young People with Cochlear Implants. Her work in the UK, includes Plasticine for Birmingham School of Acting, Far from the Madding Crowd and Saving Anne for Musical Futures at the Greenwich Theatre, and The Agoraphobics Clinic at RADA. She has also worked as a Teaching Artist at MTC’s Summer School, the World Interplay Playwriting Conference, NIDA, VCA, St Martin’s, STC, and Opera Australia. Naomi has recently been appointed Artistic Director of Patch Theatre in Adelaide.

Richard Vabre

Richard Vabre

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William McInnes

Dayna Morrissey

Dayna Morrissey

Dayna is a Melbourne based production designer, who studied for a Postgraduate Diploma in Theatre at the Victorian College of the Arts, and has previously designed The Sublime for MTC. Dayna’s recent designs include Hedda Gabler (Belvoir Theatre); the adaptation of Ingmar Bergman’s Persona (adapted with Adena Jacobs and Danny Pettingill for Fraught Outfit); Hate (Malthouse Theatre); On the Bodily Education of Young Girls (Fraught Outfit/NEON Festival); Speaking in Tongues (Griffin Theatre Company); Beyond the Neck, The City and Faces in the Crowd (Red Stitch Actors Theatre); and The Lost Story of the Magdalen Asylum and i(Peepshow Inc.). Her other company appointments include Monash University Honours Ensemble, St Martins Youth Arts Centre, Little Wing Puppets, and FOG Theatre. Dayna received a 2012 Green Room Award for her design of Persona, and has previously been nominated for her set designs for On the Bodily Education of Young Girls (2013), Devine (2011), The City (2010), and White with Wire Wheels (Union House Theatre, 2007).

Chloe Greaves

Chloe Greaves

The Waiting Room is Chloe’s debut with the MTC. Some of her most recent costume designs included Blak Cabaret (Sydney Festival/ Malthouse); The Magic Pudding (Victorian Opera); On the Bodily Education of Young Girls (Fraught Outfit/NEON Festival), Le Donna Curiose (The Juliard School, New York); Macbeth and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Essential Theatre); Thérese Raquin and The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (Dirty Pretty Theatre); and Pacific Overtures (Watch This Productions). Chloe also works in film and television, and has designed music videos for San Cisco, Guy Sebastian, Montaigne, and Imperial Teen. Chloe won the Green Room Award for her Body of Work in 2014 and has been nominated another four times: in 2014 in the Musical Theatre category for Pacific Overtures; in 2013, in the Opera category for The Magic Pudding (set and costume); in 2012, in the Independent Theatre category for her costume design in The Pineapple Sorrow (Crossditch Theatre); and in 2010, the Independent Theatre category in 2010 for The Fate of Franklin and his Gallant Crew (Four Larks Theatre).

Kate Atkinson

Kate Atkinson

Brett Cousins

Brett Cousins

Russell Goldsmith

Russell Goldsmith

Sophie Ross

Sophie Ross

Greg Stone

Greg Stone

Michael Carmody

Michael Carmody

Michael Carmody has designed video for numerous Melbourne theatrical productions including Bare Witness and Chapters from the Pandemic, for which he received a Green Room Award nomination. His short films include Debutantes, which screened at MIFF 2005. In 2013/14, he was filmmaker on the Spinning Yarns project and Video Artist on the public art installation The Locker Room, both for the City of Knox. He also collaborated with Nadja Kostich on the Monash University/Bachelor of Performing Arts: Third Year Production Raid. In 2015, his collaboration with Elissa Goodrich, Dusk to Dawn: Devolving, screened at the eighteenth Traverse Video Festival in Toulouse, France, and his short film Drowning World will screen as part of La Trobe University’s Centre for Creative Arts Nature in the Dark project. Following his video design for MTC Education’s I Call My Brothers, this is Michael’s first MTC mainstage production.

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Geraldine Cook-Dafner

Artwork for Kylie Trounson

Kylie Trounson

Kylie Trounson has worked as a playwright, actor and lawyer. She is currently a Writer in Residence at Melbourne Theatre Company as part of the NEXT STAGE Writers’ Program. Kylie’s plays have been developed through Playwriting Australia’s National Script Workshop and National Play Festival, Sydney Theatre Company’s Rough Drafts and Melbourne Theatre Company’s Cybec Electric. Her work includes The Waiting Room, which premiered at MTC in 2015 and was nominated for an AWGIE award for Best Play. Other plays include The Man with the September Face (Arts Centre Victoria/Full Tilt), The Lost Story of the Magdalene Asylum (Green Room Award winner for Best Site Specific Work), Love Letters (Victorian Arts Centre), Hotel and Uninvited Guests at the Melbourne Fringe Festival. In 2010/11 she was Writer-in-Residence at Red Stitch and wrote Merman, which was shortlisted for the 2011 Patrick White Playwright’s Award. Kylie is also developing new television dramas with Matchbox Pictures and Easy Tiger.