Death variations downstairs at the Seymour Centre

8 July 2005

B Sharp opens its 14-month season in the Seymour Centre’s Downstairs Theatre tonight with its first fully funded production: Death Variations by Europe's most produced playwright, Jon Fosse.

The play, which depicts a journey of reflection for a couple shocked by the suicide of their daughter, follows the acclaimed production of Jon Fosse’s Mother and Child at B Sharp’s usual venue, the Belvoir St Downstairs Theatre.

“What makes the play compelling is the deadly accuracy with which Fosse captures his characters’ verbal and emotional inarticulacy”, the UK Guardian wrote. “It has the smell of life.”

Tonight’s production, presented by East Coast Theatre Company with direction by Joseph Uchitel and translation from the Norwegian by May-Brit Akerholt, is funded by the NSW Ministry for the Arts and Australia Council for the Arts.

Amongst the cast are (pictured, from left) Patrick Dickson, well known for his work with the Bell Shakespeare Company; regular Sydney Theatre Company performer, Linda Cropper; Ben Ager who has worked extensively across stage and television; and Bojana Novakovic, 2004 AFI Best Actress Award winner.

B Sharp is Company B’s mentoring arm, its way of fostering theatrical talent by providing artistic and administrative support to small theatre companies, under the direction of Lyn Wallis, through a series of commissioned productions.

For the next 14 months Company B and its B Sharp are making the Seymour Centre their temporary home while their Belvoir Street venue undergoes renovation.

“The University of Sydney is delighted to host Company B at the Seymour Centre,” said Professor John Hearn, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic & International). “We look forward to working together to present an outstanding theatrical program.”

Death Variations runs until 31 July. Meantime on 20 July, Company B opens its season in the York Theatre with David Hare’s acclaimed political satire Stuff Happens, directed by Neil Armfield. Bookings for both: 9699 3444, http//