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FOUNTAINS BEYOND by George Landen Dann

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"Until the Queensland Theatre Company established a playwrights award named in his honour, few Australian theatregoers had heard of George Landen Dann. If Fountains Beyond, dating from the late 1930s, is anything to go by, we have all been the poorer for that" – Martin Buzacott, The Australian, 2000

THEMES: Race relations, Indigenous Australia, dispossession, assimilation

CHARACTER AGES: 18+

Length
LENGTH: 1.5 Hours
Cast Size
CAST SIZE: 7 - 8 Cast Members
Target Audience
TARGET AUDIENCE: Adult
   PLAYWRIGHT: George Landen Dann
$ 9.95
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SYNOPSIS Celebrated English travel writer Miss Gertrude Harnett has arrived in Kooreelba. Mayoral candidate Mr Watson, determined to offer Ms Harnett an 'authentic' Aboriginal experience sets out to organise a corroboree, with all money raised to go towards a new children's playground. The proposed playground site however, is the site of Koorelba's indigenous settlement and home to, amongst others, Vic and Peggy Filmer. Will the Aboriginal population be forced to move? Or can a compromise be reached?

In Fountains Beyond, Dann highlights the complexity of the relationship between Indigenous and white Australians, explores the politics and practicalities of dispossession, and challenges the idea of Indigenous homogeneity. He demands that audiences consider the assumptions behind and ethics of "Aboriginal welfare" and Assimilation policies.

PRODUCTION HISTORY The New Theatre League, in conjunction with The Playwrights' Advisory board, first produced Fountains Beyond in 1942. It premiered in Sydney on January 28 and was subsequently produced by numerous theatre companies across Australia. Small productions were also staged in London and in Wales. The text has also been adapted on numerous occasions; the play has been revised for radio; Dann himself re-wrote Fountains Beyond as a musical (with Gerry Cole); and in 2000, Wesley Enoch and the Queensland Theatre Company reframed the text as part of the Brisbane Festival.

ISBN 978 1 921390 30 2

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