THE HARP IN THE SOUTH: PART ONE &  PART TWO

A landmark two-part stage adaptation of Ruth Park’s beloved Australian trilogy celebrating Sydney in all its funny, gritty glory.

16 Aug - 6 Oct 2018

ROSLYN PACKER THEATRE

The Play

★★★★★ Time Out | ★★★★★ Stage Noise
★★★★1/2 Limelight | ★★★★ Sydney Morning Herald
★★★★ Daily Review | ★★★★ Audrey Journal

Sydney Theatre Company presents

THE HARP IN THE SOUTH
PART ONE AND PART TWO

By Ruth Park 
An adaptation for the stage by Kate Mulvany

World premiere

A great Australian novel. A landmark theatre event. A portrait of Sydney as it once was.

The world premieres of The Harp in the South: Part One and The Harp in the South: Part Two are designed to be enjoyed as one unforgettable, epic theatrical experience.

This major new work is one of the most ambitious productions STC has ever created. Celebrated playwright Kate Mulvany has adapted novelist Ruth Park’s revered Australian trilogy – MissusThe Harp in the South and Poor Man’s Orange – and spread these beloved stories across two equally ambitious plays.

The two parts stand alone. It’s a moving family saga and a celebration of Sydney in all its funny, gritty glory.

Production Patron Gretel Packer


THE PLAYS

First appearing in 1947, Ruth Park’s trilogy brought to life a carnival of characters. Full of humour, romance and spirited rebellion, it captured our city’s best and worst features with a riveting, unflinching and endearing honesty.

It traces the lives of the Darcy family over the course of thirty years. Living at twelve-and-a-half Plymouth Street, Surry Hills, they grow up and grow old amidst brothels and sly grog, the pious and the violent, the opportunists and the desperate.

Artistic Director Kip Williams brings together an star-studded ensemble of 18 actors, with design from the stellar team that fashioned Chimerica in 2017. It’s a stunning work full of music and movement.

The Harp in the South: Part One

The Darcy family saga begins with a love story. It’s 1920 in a dusty, rural NSW town when young Margaret Kilker falls for Hugh Darcy. Newly married and in search of a brighter future, they move to Sydney’s Surry Hills, where they find a home on Plymouth Street and start a family. In the shadow of the Second World War, their daughters Roie and Dolour set out on their own adventures in the crowded, boisterous streets of Sydney.

The Harp in the South: Part Two

The story continues amidst the changing world of Sydney in the 1950s. The shadow of the war lingers, but there is a new danger on the horizon. The homes of Surry Hills’ poor are threatened by government plans for redevelopment. Together, this community of workers, rebels and misfits rise up and fight back, with their voices and with their fists. At twelve-and-a-half Plymouth Street, four generations of the Darcy clan share their narrow terrace home. Beset by tragedy and loss, they struggle on, lucky to survive, ever hopeful in the face of adversity.

Duration Approx 2hrs 35mins (including 20 min interval)
Content warning Strong language, adult themes including sexual violence, suicide and domestic violence. Use of theatrical haze, smoke and herbal cigarettes. Parental guidance and discretion advised. Please get in touch with us if you have any queries. If you or someone you know needs information or support, these organisations are there to help: Beyond BlueLifeline and Headspace.


PRICING INFORMATION

Single tickets

A Reserve
Saturday evening $108
Adult $103
Seniors cardholder $93
Concession $82
Under 30 $81
Previews $81
Group bookings (10+ people) $87

B Reserve
Mon – Sat performances (excluding Sat evening) $93
Saturday evening $98

C Reserve
Previews $73
Mon – Sat performances (excluding Sat evening) $73
Saturday evening $79

Prices correct at the time of publication and subject to change without notice. Exact prices will be displayed with seat selection.

Transaction fees may apply
$7.50 online; $8 telephone; $0 Box Office counter

Dates

Part One
Previews 16 Aug 2018 – 23 Aug 2018
Season 27 Aug 2018 – 6 Oct 2018

Part Two
Previews 18 Aug 2018 – 24 Aug 2018
Season 29 Aug 2018 – 6 Oct 2018

Performance start times

Part One
Preview performances 7.30pm, Wed 22 Aug, 1pm
In-season evening performances Mon & Tue 6.30pm; Wed – Sat 7.30pm
Matinee performances Wed 1pm; Sat 1pm

Part Two
Preview performances 7.30pm
In-season evening performances Mon & Tue 6.30pm; Wed – Sat 7.30pm
Matinee performances Wed 1pm; Sat 1.30pm

Part One duration Approx. 3hrs 30mins (including 20 min interval, then later a 5 min pause)  
Part Two duration Approx 2hrs 35mins (including 20 min interval)


Pricing and ticket information

Single tickets

A Reserve
Saturday evening $108
Adult $103
Seniors cardholder $93
Concession $82
Under 30 $81
Previews $81
Group bookings (10+ people) $87

B Reserve
Mon – Sat performances (excluding Sat evening) $93
Saturday evening $98

C Reserve
Previews $73
Mon – Sat performances (excluding Sat evening) $73
Saturday evening $79

*These seats have an impeded view of some scenes.

Prices correct at the time of publication and subject to change without notice. Exact prices will be displayed with seat selection.

Authorised ticket sellers
The only authorised ticket sellers for this event are Sydney Theatre Company, Roslyn Packer Theatre and Sydney Opera House. Only tickets purchased by authorised agencies should be considered valid and reliable. More info

Transaction fees may apply
$7.50 online; $8 telephone; $0 Box Office counter

Concession, seniors and under 30 tickets
Suitable and valid identification must be provided for collection of tickets and at the venue, such as your concession or proof of age card. Alternatively, you may email a copy of your identification to [email protected]. Please quote your booking reference number.

Access requirements
For specific access requirements, please call Box Office on (02) 9250 1777 to book your seats.


Access Performances

Captioned performances

Part One:
Wed 19 Sep 1pm
Mon 1 Oct 6.30pm

Part Two:
Wed 19 Sep 7.30pm
Tue 2 Oct 6.30pm 

Audio described performance

Part One:
Sat 22 Sep 1.30pm

Part Two:
Sat 22 Sep 7.30pm

Accessibility at STC  

Director Kip Williams
Set Designer David Fleischer
Costume Designer Renée Mulder
Lighting Designer Nick Schlieper
Composer The SWEATS
Sound Designer Nate Edmondson
Musical Director Luke Byrne
Assistant Director Jessica Arthur
Fight Director Nigel Poulton

With
Joel Bishop, Luke Carroll, Tony Cogin, Jack Finsterer, Benedict Hardie, Emma Harvie, Anita Hegh, Ben O’Toole, Lucia Mastrantone, Heather Mitchell, Tara Morice, Rose Riley, Rahel Romahn, Jack Ruwald, Guy Simon, Bruce Spence, Helen Thomson, Contessa Treffone, George Zhao.

Marketing image Rene Vaile

This listing is updated as cast and creatives are confirmed in the lead-up to the production, and if there are any changes to the team. Ensure you have the most up-to-date information about each play by opting in to our enewsletter.

We offer a range of free and ticketed events designed to give you further insight into our plays. Find out more about our Insight Events.  

Pier Group Lunch
Mon 18 Jun 12pm

Pre-season Briefing
Mon 6 Aug 7pm
Richard Wherrett Studio
FREE

Night with the Actors
Part One: Mon 3 Sep post-show
Part Two: Tue 18 Sep post-show

Matinee Club
Wed 19 Sep 12pm

★★★★★ "The Australian theatrical canon has a new epic ... leading with the heart to tell a saga of love, loss and family that begins in emigration from Ireland, but belongs proudly to Surry Hills." Time Out

★★★★★“Brilliant, memorable, epic, intimate, hilarious, tragic, unsentimental, humane, loving, vicious, tender, sickening, romantic, inspiring, redemptive. The Harp in the South … is all of this and more.” Stage Noise

★★★★1/2 "It’s this unfailing hope that characterises Park and Mulvany’s characters, and it’s what will stick in the mind long after you leave the theatre. These plays will make your blood sing – they are utterly sublime." Limelight

★★★★“Mulvany's ultimate triumph lies in preserving Park's ability to weave Shakespearian detachment into a suburb-sized blanket spreading warmth to all her characters; to eschew judgment upon this hotchpotch of people from the grimy houses and grubbier streets of Surry Hills after WWII.” Sydney Morning Herald

★★★★ "A mighty achievement, one that will likely be talked about in the same awed tones as Cloudstreet in years to come... This is theatre for which terms such as “big-hearted” and “sweeping” were invented." Audrey Journal

“Like all the best drama, it is both wildly comic and achingly sad. It is performed in two parts over nearly six hours of stage time, during which we come to care deeply for all its flawed but endearing characters… This is one of the best casts ­assembled in Sydney for a long time.” The Australian

“Mulvany’s adaptation is exhilarating and witty, replete with irresistible drama, and brimming with inspiration…. Director Kip Williams’ vision is exquisite… Flawlessly designed, the show looks and sounds magnificent.” Suzy Goes See

“This epic adaptation of Ruth Park’s famous trilogy of novels about love and life in the slums of Surry Hills is a triumph.” Stage Whispers

“This moving production has been beautifully cast and choreographed — emotionally, comic­ally and physically by director Kip Williams who as STC’s artistic director also had the vision to program it. He is moving from strength to strength this year.” The Australian

"What stands out about this engrossing first part is how instinctively Mulvany understands Park’s novels. The richness of Surry Hills life is translated to the stage with breathtaking ease, while the difficulties of nascent womanhood are handled unflinchingly and affectingly. Like Park, she centres the women in her story, allowing these complex heroines the space to soar." Limelight

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