Melbourne Observer


Done and Dusted!

And Student Body has come to an end.

Thank you all who came and supported the show and made the process so fantastic! It was wonderful to hear the comments and reviews and see the difference we made to so many people’s perceptions.

Congratulations to Alana Valentine on creating such a wonderful pice of writing and to BOObook theatre for producing such a wonderful stage production of its Melbourne premiere.

Once again congratulations to all the cast, crew, FOH team, volunteers and everbody else who participated in this production.

Finally, to the actors you suceeded in making this show a reality!

Well done!

New Photos!

Check out these new photos – Student Body live on stage!

Reviews, Photos and THREE shows to go


have you seen the photos taken by the amazing Richard Brockett and Tara Patwarden? Because they are absolutely stunning.

Check out all the actors captured in their magical moments, our cellist Jonathan and our beautifullydesigned set and projection all beneath the lights of  Union House Theatre.

You can check out all the latest photos here

And if you haven’t already do read Emma’s Bush review

AND an interview with playwright Alana vanentine and heaps more on our links and reviews page 

We only have THREE more shows so bring your friends get a group together and lets pack this theatre! I look forward to seeing you all VERY soon.

And we have had a FANTASTIC Preview and Opening!

Dear Ladies and Gents of Melbourne

Well lets just say if you haven’t already seen the first FIVE shows of Student Body (including preview) you better move it because we have ONLY three more to go.

Get a group together, book together and if you have 20 people you get a free ticket!

The preview was  well attended and we had lots of support from an appreciative audience despite the appearance of a possum who gave our stage manager a huge fright and was the cause of more than a few creative lighting changes…

But the show must go on and the matinees filled with young high school students have been very enthusiastic and receptive while Friday night’s audience was AMAZING and the energy of the cast was unstoppable.

We have plenty more pictures from the show coming up very shortly as will all the reviews.

Support a show that is full of humour and insight and puts cultural diversity on Australian Stages.

Thank you again to all who have attended and please pass the message on so that we have the honor of performing to a packed house on this coming Thursday and Friday.

Book those tickets!


And today is BUMP-IN

Its hard to imagine that not that long ago I was writing the first blog for this show and now almost in 48 hours from now we will be having our official OPENING night.

For those of you want cheap tix there are still about 30 tickets left (!!) so hurry and buy your now to see the show only for $10 on Wednesday night at our preview.

For the rest of of our theatre community glam up and get ready for an amazing opening night on Thursday the 17th at 8pm.

The show has come so far in a remarkably short period of time and it is testimony to the collected efforts of our amazing cast ( hats off to Keith Brockett, Ash Kakkar, Sheena Reyes, Rachel Fong and Kelly Ryan) who have done a fantatsic job bringing this play from page to stage in a truly magical way.

In addition we also have our ‘Movement Lady’ Kelly Ryan’s  beautiful choreography, Annie Hui-Hsin Hsieh exquisite score and Jonathan Tosio’s brilliant execution which enhances this work in very special ways. Thank you for all your creative insight.

To our designers: Laura Smith, Tara Patwarden, Felix Ho and Elisha Teo – thank you for all the time, effort and energy you have devoted to make this show a brilliant success – may your work continue to be respcted and renowned and all your efforts applauded.

To our crew: Anu Sabharawal, Gowri Paary and Hedley Finger – the show is in your capable hands and we thank you for all your hardwork that has enabled the production to come so far already.

To our FOH team: Louise Berene and Gurkamal Gill – I know our patrons will have a highly enjoyable time left in your capable hands and thank you for all the organisational efforts that you have made to ensure the season is a smooth success.

Finally to our Producer Sue Lindsay whose tireless efforts and committment to care for all her team (in body and in soul) have enriched the Student Body experience for all involved. Thank you.

And finally to all those who area ttending our show over the next two weeks – we thank you. This work by Australian playwright Alana Valentine is a compelling, entertaining and thought provoking production and BooBook theatre takes great pride in presenting the world premiere production.

Do join us! Book your tickets for Student Body and we hope to see you there!

New press photos! Click here to see the rest 🙂

Credit: Richard Brockett

WANTED: FOH ushers and tickets sales people!

Dear  Melbourne theatre community

Thank you for booking your ticket for our wonderful show. It is the last full week of rehearsal before we enter the space at Union theatre and we are all tremendously excited 🙂

Would any of you have some spare time to help with Student Body as:

 smiling people to sell tickets at Union theatre, Melbourne University, if you can give us one hour or more anytime, this will be 12-2 every day for the next two weeks Tuesday 8- Friday 25 march

  • friendly  people to help serve supper to special guests on opening night, 7-9.30pm union theatre Thursday 17 March
  •  part of the crew to bump in and bump out ( help with lights and set) Tuesday 15 March 12-5pm,  and Friday 25 March -watch the show and bump out 10-12pm.
  • ushers 6.30pm -10.30 pm , and you get to watch the show March wed 16, thurs 17, fri 18, thurs 24, fri 25

The show is looking fantastic, hope you can be part of the fun! Please email Sue at OR just turn tomorrow at the theatre bar at union house theatre ready to share your love of theatre and your prowess at selling tickets!!

txt 0450549603if you have any questions and hope to see you and your friends at the show 🙂

A sucessful launch and a rehearsal with a difference

Friday the 25th of February was the launch of Student Body and while the cast weren’t giving anything away it was clear that the patrons at Guildford Lane Gallery  were intrigued and excited at the prospect of Student Body taking to the stage.

Our production team is ever growing and more and more volunteers are coming on board  so jump on the bandwagon and if you’re keen to be part of the growing mass of Student Body email

Rehearsals took a more intimate turn this Saturday and our cast were exposed to new levels of exploring the nuances of friendship and love – and did so with honesty and feeling.

Costumes are well underway and magic is happening both inside the rehearsal space and possibly at every other moment that honours the 24 hours we are given each day – thank you production team for your tireless efforts!

We are growing in supporters and if you would like your business to be associated with this excellent show do let us know and you will be promoted across multiple levels and given our heartfelt thanks and gratitude!

Speaking of which have you booked your ticket for opening night? We do have 390 seats but they are filling fast so don’t delay – book now.

We have planned something extra special for the month of March as far as our blogs go so keep watching this space  and thank you all for your unstinting support 🙂

Student Body launch THIS Friday the 25th at Guildford lane Gallery

Dear artistic community of Melbourne

BOObook Theatre is thrilled to be presenting two very special shows that are currently under way: Student Body and Phi and Me

And to celebrate this very special occasion we are having a HUGE launch party this Friday and we want to see you there.

Music, drinks and nibbles will all be present as will a chance to catch a sneak preview of Phi and Me AND the opportunity to meet the wonderful cast of Student Body.

Are you ready for a bit of drama, a fun atmosphere, a chance to catch up with fellow thespians and the opportunity to BUY tickets on the night to two AMAZING shows?

bring your friends and get ready for a night out.
Details below:

Venue: GUILDFORD lane gallery (2 minutes from Melbourne Central – exit Elizabeth street)

DATE: 25th of February

Time: 6:30 – 9:30 pm

For further information on the venue visit:

and for press releases, cast n crew info and rehearsal photos see
our blog and also check out

Supporting Diversity on Stage

Dear community of Melbourne

Thank you all to those who are supporting this show. This is not the first time nor will it be the last when we make a stand to reflect the ‘melting pot’ that Melbourne is onto a predominantly white Australian stage but every attempt WILL make a difference.

By supporting this show, Australian playwright Alana Valentine and the stories of these young international students who call Australia home, you are making a huge difference to how diversity is perceived.

If you can’t make it to the show make sure you spread it through your networks. Get your organizations involved. Become sponsors.
Link our website to your blog. Become volunteers and help distribute our flyers throughout the city – we NEED you. Invite your friends and come see the show as a group!

Publicize this event so that everyone knows it is taking place. Schools are starting to book. If you know teachers, international student coordinators, youth workers, multicultural or diversity or just any arts worker/politician/community worker who is interested in this subject PLEASE tell them.

If you have a message that you would like to share, either leave a comment or send me a private message and I will add it to the site.

Thank you for making a difference.
Thank you for supporting ‘Student Body’

See you soon 🙂

And week three is down!

In three weeks its amazing what we have achieved and I am so proud of our talented cast.

A full run this sunday was preceded by a very intense weekend filled with physicality, choreography, and we even had our composer on board watching the final run.

There’s still plenty to do but within such a short rehearsal period there is definately magic in the air as we make theatre.

For all those who are wondering what exactly this play is about (and you’ve read the ‘About’ sections and press releases we have some new tidbits coming your way.

The cast will very soon be sharing their favourite quotes of the play to give you a taste of what’s making them tick and would you beleive, we have rehearsal photos up and ready for you to see!

Share your thoughts, comments and opinions – we want to hear from you because this is Student Body and its about all of you!

First full RUN this Sunday…

The show is really starting to come together and wow isn’t it going to look just amazing !

This week Sue ( our lovely producer) and I have set the stage, discussed entrances and exits, agreed on projection and all matters of magical things to make this show come alive and we’re tremendously excited 🙂

Also our actors have been working extremely hard putting in every spare hour they can to make sure that this week (believe it or not – only our third week of rehearsals) they are off-book as far as possible.

Yes, I push my actors hard. Very hard.

But I’d rather do that now and allow them to creatively explore and polish what they have developed – which can only be done once that pesky script is out of one’s hands and the mind knows the lines so well it can relax, listen and create.

Relax, listen and create. Yes, I’m repeating myself because I believe its important.

Stay tuned to hear how this weekend of rehearsal went …

And another weekend down!

Its crazy to think that in five weeks time Student Body will be making its world premiere in melbourne!

Our production team has grown and welcomeon board  Heather Bloom (Marketing Manager), Laura Smith (Lighting Designer) Lu Berene (Front of House Manager) and Gill Gurkamal (Front of House Assistant).

Rehearsals are well under way with last week multiple rehersals taking place and this week looking like being no different.

As a director one of my priorities is to work with actors who are flexible and who can take direction. It’s so important that actors do their reserach and come to the creative table with their ideas but are always willing to be flexible and experiment with new things.

In that respect hats off to my very talented cast who have done extremely well and have welcomed my challenges (physical, emotional, sensory as well as many others) and have produced some solid work so far – fingers crossed we can run through the whole play by the end of the week 🙂

Flyers on ready to GO!!

We are very fortunate to have the talents of Ms. Elisha Teo who has not only designed our poster, website but also our post card sized flyer which is now being printed and will be ready for distribution on Monday!

We are now building our database of volunteers and we have a variety of openings available. If you are interested please read on and come to our Volunteer Induction Meeting.

You will have the chance to work alongside some exciting young theatre professionals and meet new friends.

These are just a few areas that we may have places available:

–     Actors for promotion during O week

–     Hosts at after show parties.

–     Hosts for season launch night

–     Liaison with groups and clubs.

–     Front-of House:

–     Backstage Crew:

–     Ushers

–     Marketing:

–     Distributing flyers

–     Translating press releases

–     Selling tickets at various hotspots around Melbourne

 Please let us know if you are able to come on Monday February 7th.

If you are not free on that night we will have another meeting soon and we will let you know when that is. Please contact our Producer Sue Lindsay at to confirmyour attendance

Rehearsals have Begun!!

Its true folks rehearsals for Student Body are well and truly on their way.

This past weekend was an excellent start with saturday beng spent with the wonderful Keith Brockett, Sheena Reyes, Ash Kakkar and Rachel Fong all incredibly eager and ready to challenge themselves.

And challenging themselves is exactly what saturday was all about!

From somevery intensive physical war-ups ( including the notorious bumwiggles – brilliant for strengthening your core and projection) to deep relaxation, mind and body exploration, african dance – and some improv too it certainly was a very full day.

Sunday was intensive but in quite a different way. With the very talented Kelly Ryan on board a solid reading was given followed by an indepth discussion and exploration -including questions like:

– How many international students are amongst your personal set of friends?

– How often do you see international students at the bars/night clubs you go to?

– How important is it to retain one’s cultural values, especially if you’re born in Australia or even second/third generation?

– How often do international students engage with Indigenous culture?

– Is there only a White australia? What is multiculturalism?

Peel away the surfaces and when you think you’ve done enough that’s when the real material is only just starting to be revealed.

Fantastic work by all and individual sessions happening this week – can’t wait to explore 🙂