Barry Otto. Illustration: Julian Meagher.


By Matthew Whittet
Director Anne-Louise Sarks
Set Designer Robert Cousins
Costume Designer Mel Page
Lighting Designer Paul Jackson
Composer Alan John
Sound Designer Nate Edmonson
Dramaturg Anthea Williams

Peter Carroll
Maggie Dence
John Gaden
Genevive Lemon
Barry Otto
Anna Volska

1 August – 13 September 2015
Upstairs Theatre

Seventeen is set in that time after high school graduation, but just before everyone moves away. It’s about the cusp of adulthood, the cusp of complete change. It could be Can’t Hardly Wait or Ten Things I Hate About You, but for one thing. It has been specially – really specially – written for a roll-call of the country’s great senior actors. To be precise: Peter Carroll (A Christmas Carol), Maggie Dence (Once in Royal David’s City), John Gaden (The Seagull), Genevieve Lemon (Death of a Salesman), Barry Otto (Last Cab to Darwin) and Anna Volska (Unholy Ghosts Griffin Theatre Company).

These venerables play a group of teenagers drinking, singing, dancing, gabbling, worrying and maybe even pashing their way through their last night of childhood and their first night of adulthood.

Sue is Mike’s girlfriend. Tom is Mike’s best friend, but he’s secretly in love with Sue. Edwina is Sue’s goody-two-shoes best friend and she’s about to get drunk for the first time. Lizzy is Mike’s annoying younger sister. And Ronny, well no-one invited Ronny and no one’s quite sure why he’s there. As dawn approaches, through a fog of cheap beer, dreams are shared, insecurities aired and secrets spilled.

 Matthew Whittet (Cinderella, Old Man) is a true original mind of Australian theatre – actor, writer, muse, scribe of human beauty and lover of oddity. Seventeen is the play he’s been getting ready to write for a long time. He spent several months interviewing several cast members to capture their voices, as well as seventeen year-olds to understand their concerns and motivations. His creation of believable teenagers play 70 year-olds is a delightful concoction.

Director Anne-Louise Sarks (Elektra / Orestes, A Christmas Carol) captures the joy, the heartbreak and exuberance of adolescence with her deft lightness of touch.

Funny, immature, wise and a little bit sad, Seventeen will turn our notions of adulthood and adolescence on their head.

Notes for Editors

Season information
Dates 1 August – 13 September 2015
Previews Saturday 1, Sunday 2 & Tuesday 4 August
Opening night Wednesday 5 August
Captioned Performance 2pm Saturday 29 August
Audio-described Performance 2pm Saturday 5 September
Unwaged Performance 2pm Thursday 10 September
Sunday Forum 3pm 13 September
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
* Ticket prices can be dynamically adjusted, either up or down, based on real-time market demand, and without notice.

Image Gallery

Hero image illustration by Julian Meagherdownload

Publicity photos by Ellis Parrinderdownload

Rehearsal photos by Brett Boardmandownload

Production photos by Brett Boardmandownload

Contact Details

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