Banjo and Lawson explores not just the poetry of arguably Australia’s two best known bush poets but Australia as it was from their birth in the 1860’s until Paterson’s death at the height of WW2 in 1941. Not just a poetry reading or lecture, Banjo and Lawson is a piece of theatre with costumes, props, set and objects from the era all used to transport the audience to an Australia long ago.
For the most part, the show is chronological. It shows students the volume and depth of each poet’s work, how much our country changed and how the introduction of new technology in each new decade impacted on the poet’s lives.
To set the scene students are confronted by the realities of growing up with a canvas tent for a home erected on a goldfield, where winter night temperatures would drop below freezing. Compared to this, a home even without running water or electricity, not to mention, no inside toilet was seen as a luxury in the mid 1800’s.
This is the story of simultaneously popular, opposites; a romantic and a realist. Deafness, wealth, alcoholism, poverty, a law degree, jail, sanatoriums, labouring, war, marriage, children, travel, teachers, family and colleagues were all big influences on one or the other of these two giants of Australian poetry.
Of course the focus is on their poetry; their contrasting images, “Past Carin’ “and “The Man from Snowy River”; their similar love of the Australian larrikin, “When Your Pants Begin To Go” and “Mulga Bill’s Bicycle” and their boisterous poetic debate, City v Country, that certainly boosted the sales of the Bulletin Newspaper in 1892.
In the brilliant hands of actor, Andy Bramble the poetry and character, life and times of these pioneers of Australian Poetry are transformed into a funny, informative, engaging piece of theatre.
What other schools have said:
Covered a lot of biographical material which was GREAT! And the juxtaposition between the two was well established. Nice selection of poems/short stories. Andy was awesome! Very engaging!
Melanie Thompson. Year 11. McCarthy Catholic Senior High School. Tamworth. NSW. 6/09/2018.
Very good performance. Andy was very professional and committed to a great performance.
Shawn Creamer. Year 7. Villanova College. Coorparoo Dc. QLD. 14/09/2018.
Excellent history. Morning poetry. Fast-pace . Andy had great passion and was engaging. Poetry was a strength.
James McGeachy. Year 8 to Year 9. Launceston Christian School. Riverside. TAS. 15/06/2018.
Price: $6.60 per student ($6.00 + $0.60 GST).
Suitable:Years 7 to 12.
Minimum Audience Size: 100 students.
Times: Show: 50 minutes. Set up: 45 minutes. Pack up: 40 minutes.
Requires an indoor performing area 4m deep x 5m wide.