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Cross-cultural performance debuts in Darwin

By Katie Weiss

CDU lecturer Dr Sandra Thibodeaux said the play was inspired by real-life events CDU lecturer Dr Sandra Thibodeaux said the play was inspired by real-life events

A performance reading of a play written by a Charles Darwin University literary studies lecturer has debuted in Darwin.

The cast, including former NT Administrator Tom Pauling AO QC, performed a reading of “The Age of Bones (Jaman Belulang)”, which follows an Indonesian mother’s quest to reunite with her lost son.

Literary studies lecturer Dr Sandra Thibodeaux said the play was inspired by real-life events involving Indonesian youths jailed in Australia for working on a boat found to be harbouring asylum seekers.

“No one knew too much about these boys so I wanted to share their stories,” Dr Thibodeaux said.

“I felt a special point of empathy for them at the time, as a mother of a teenaged boy myself.”

Dr Thibodeaux said the play aimed to reflect the power of maternal love and explored the lengths a mother would go to protect or to reunite with her son.

The play is a cross-cultural collaboration between Indonesian and Australian performing arts practitioners. The performance was supported by Darwin Festival, the NT Government’s Arts NT, Brown’s Mart and CDU.