Students tackle 'border protection'



MELBOURNE — Creative arts students from the University of Melbourne have responded to Australia's treatment of asylum seekers with Asylum, a theatrical work that addresses issues of "border protection" and the farce of the "children overboard" affair.

"Asylum seeks to cut through the mesh of misinformation and the manipulation of public opinion with an abstract, incisive dream-like collage of ironic and revealing images", said director Paul Monaghan.

The wide range of source material that informs the work includes Michel Foucault's critique of Western practices of punishment and imprisonment, Australian social and political history, statements by politicians and their spin doctors and relevant legal and political documents.

In the tradition of "documentary theatre", Asylum utilises satirical humour but rejects conventional didactic or "realist" performance. A soundscape consisting of personal accounts of asylum seekers is interwoven with ironic music.

Asylum will be performed from October 30 to November 2 at 8pm, and also at 3pm on November 2, at the Open Stage, Arts Centre Building, University of Melbourne. Tickets are $12 or $6 concession. For bookings call 9347 7505.

From Green Left Weekly, October 30, 2002.
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