Waves of Change


In the spring of Australia's Bicentennial year Handspan Theatre stepped off the stage and dived into the Castlemaine Municipal Swimming Pool to present Waves of Change. For Handspan it was an opportunity to tell the story of Australia their way, and to fulfil a long-standing ambition to try water as a medium for puppetry.

Waves of Change was based on a concept by Philip Lethlean, written by Tony Rickards and directed by Trina Parker, with music composed by Marcia Howard. It was created for the Castlemaine Festival and played two chilly nights over one October weekend.

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Stage preset before performance
Opening sequence, spinning lights as the continent emerges from the water
five people wearing hats in the shape of waves
The first wave of people
The next wave, the British fleet 1788
The Bunyip
Enter the Auctioneer
" What am I bid for ... ?"
A spinning Hills Hoist
Uluru, Chinese dragon and Pine Gap US/Australia surveillance facility
FJ Holden, Victorian Arts Centre spire and Sydney Opera House
Curtain call
Preparing the space
Construction begins in sunshine
... and continues in rain
Stage complete and pool filled
Rigging the pool
Rigging the stage
Flag rehearsal
Objects preset backstage
Objects in rehearsal
Cold, wet puppeteers
Rehearsing the Roo
Building the Bunyip
Sound and light
In the bleachers
The dressing room