By Una Cruickshank.
Maurice Sendak’s children’s classic Where the Wild Things Are has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity in recent years. As the children of the original fans come of age (amazingly, the book has been in print since 1963), there has been a spate of tributes in such unlikely media as ballet, landscape design and tattooing. A live-action film directed by Spike Jonze is due for release in 2009, and already has movie fans in a frenzy. So the time was ripe for Ben Edwards, Fiona Bryant, Rob McCreedy and choreographer Kate Stanley to collaborate on their own interpretation of the much-loved story – one with a distinct Melbourne twist.
Max GRR!, a performance inspired by Max’s adventures, will be held in the Centreplace Laneway on the evenings of July 23rd and 24th. Audience members will line the laneway on both sides; the performance can alternatively be viewed from Hell’s Kitchen, the bar overlooking the laneway.
Bryant, who plays Max, has adapted an existing dance piece from the stage to the long, narrow confines of the laneway, while McCreedy, a recent addition to the ensemble, represents the monsters. Edwards, an architect with Melbourne firm 1:1, has created a set designed to exploit the dark, eerie aesthetic of the laneway to the full.
They’re not giving away much more than that – details of the sets and costumes are being kept under wraps until the first night. What is clear is that Max GRR! will not adhere strictly to the original story – Edwards promises a darker, more abstract interpretation of the themes in the book, designed with a grownup audience in mind.
Wednesday 23rd -Thursday 24th July, 8pm