Performance Archive: 1982


Melbourne Moomba Festival
Date: 26 Feb 1982 – 14 Mar 1982

THEATRE WORKS strives to provide a broad range of entertainment, educational and leisure activities to the people living in the Eastern Region of Melbourne. Our fully professional company of writers and actors are involved in creating plays with groups of people from the area and dealing with issues that concern them. Storming Mont Albert by Tram is essentially a play about characters from the Mont Albert Route, for people living on and using the No 42 route. Through Community Theatre ordinary people have access to a new way of expressing their concerns and aspirations, and have them seen as important and legitimate.

Trams are an extraordinary form of transport. You leap on one and depending on your luck, sit or stand next to someone who could be anything from an M.P. to a wharfie, then leap off again. STORMING MONT ALBERT BY TRAM is about people who leap on and off trams.

The play is also essentially about TRAMS. The vehicle you are now sitting in is about fifty years old. It uses no petrol and therefore causes no pollution. It’s simple electric motors ensure that it will be around and have a useful life for many years to come. How many cars, trucks or busses are fifty years old and still going strong? Melbourne’s trams are an essential part of our inheritance. They are unique in Australia and almost the rest of the world, Every tram journey (when it’s not too crowded and you -feel like an anchovy on fried school kids) is a near mystical experience. There you are trapped with thirty or forty strangers for a fixed time in a fixed space and there’s nothing you can do about it. It’s either the cosy reassurance of something like a Sydney ferry or the gut wrenching, experience of a ride on the big dipper at Luna Park. Either way it’s  a unique experience, and everyone has a story of something memorable that’s happened to them on a tram. . . here are a few of ours . . . . .

A group of commuters meet for the first time on a Number 42 travelling from Mont Albert to the City. Most of them are just looking for a simple night out on the town. But things don’t turn out quite like any of them planned this is the starting point for the new play adapted from the prize winning short story by Paul Davies.

THE PLAY ACTUALLY TAKES PLACE ON A MOVING TRAM. The audience board a specially chartered No. 42 at the Mont Albert Terminus Corner of Whitehorse and Union Roads Mont Albert, and become spectators to a bizarre sequence of events based on an actual incident observed by the author early last year.

The first half of the play ends at the Collins and Elizabeth Street intersection where facilities for interval are provided courtesy of the Hotel Australia. Thirty minutes later the audience re-boards the tram and witness the second act en route back to the Mont Albert Terminus.

Presented by: Theatre Works [Eastern Suburbs professional Community Theatre Company]

Written by: Paul Davies

Directed by: Mark Shirrefs

Mary Sitarenos – Alice
Peter Sommerfeld – Danny
Hannie Rayson – Samantha
Carolyn (Caz) Howard – Cathy
Peter Finlay – Nigel
Tony Kishane – Terry
Paul Davies – Morris
Graham Stephen – Warren
Brett Stewart – Cyril

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