By Anton Chekhov
Adapted by Eamon Flack
Director Eamon Flack
Set Designer Michael Hankin
Costume Designer Mel Page
Associate Costume Designer Alicia Clements
Lighting Designer Verity Hampson
Composer & Sound Designer Steve Toulmin

Fayssal Bazzi
John Bell
Blazey Best
Airlie Dodds
John Howard
Ewen Leslie
Zahra Newman
Yalin Ozucelik
Helen Thomson

19 September – 1 November
Upstairs Theatre

The time for Anton Chekhov’s great black comedy has come. This festival of small-mindedness, short-sightedness, idiocy, meanness and the outside chance of salvation is ready for us now that the Age of Entitlement is finally over.

Nikolai Ivanov is going mad. His life used to be full of possibility but now he’s moneyless on an old farm with his mendicant uncle and his inexplicably happy if slightly criminal cousin. He’s in debt to his neighbours, he has the hots for their daughter, and nothing much makes any sense to him anymore. Oh, and his wife is dying. Life’s all healthcare and making payments. There must be an alternative, but the only ways out are mean and petty, or rather cruel. How far is Ivanov willing to go in the pursuit of happiness?

Ivanov is one of those terrific celebrations of human magnificence and human ridiculousness that work so well on the Belvoir stage – a great gathering of hopeless, helpless, marvellous creatures in pursuit of a better life. Or at least a life with a bigger animating idea than, well, than whatever it is that’s animating the country right now.

Ewen Leslie (Hamlet, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof) leads a first-class ensemble of citizen-actors: Fayssal Bazzi (The Government Inspector), John Bell, Blazey Best (Medea), Airlie Dodds (The Bleeding Tree Griffin Theatre Company), John Howard (Every Breath), Zahra Newman (The Government Inspector), Yalin Ozucelik (The Kiss) and Helen Thomson (Summer of the Seventeenth Doll).

Together with director Eamon Flack (The Glass Menagerie) their task is to try to put Australia on stage in the guise of contemporary Russia. ‘I’ve wanted to do this play for a very long time and writing the adaptation has been a great, great pleasure,’ says Flack. ‘It will be a great joy to work this cast on this beautiful and very funny play that is, strangely, a very natural critique of Australia today.’

Notes for Editors

Season information
Dates 19 September – 1 November 2015
Previews Saturday 19, Sunday 20 & Tuesday 22 September
Opening night Wednesday 23 September
Unwaged Performance 2pm Thursday 1 October
Sunday Forum 3pm 1 November
Times Tuesday 6.30pm | Wednesday to Friday 8pm | Saturday 2pm & 8pm | Sunday 5pm
Tickets Full from $72* | Seniors/Industry/Group $62 | Concession $49 | Previews $50
Venue Belvoir St Theatre | 25 Belvoir St, Surry Hills
Bookings 02 9699 3444 or belvoir.com.au
* Ticket prices can be dynamically adjusted, either up or down, based on real-time market demand, and without notice.

Ewen Leslie as Nikolai Ivanov
Zahra Newman as his wife Anna
Fayssal Bazzi as his cousin Misha Borkin
John Bell as his uncle Matvei Shabelsky
Yalin Ozucelik as local doctor Yevgeny Lvov
John Howard as neighbour and family friend Pavel Lebedev
Helen Thomson as Lebedev’s wife Zinaida Savishna
Airlie Dodds as their daughter Sasha
Blazey Best as the wealthy widow Marfa Babakina

Image Gallery

Hero illustration by Julian Meagherdownload

Publicity images by Ellis Parrinderdownload

Rehearsal images by Brett Boardman download

Production images by Brett Boardman download


Contact Details

For media information and interviews contact Elly Michelle Clough
[email protected] | 02 8396 6242 | 0407 163 921