Timeless classic

Written by Ray Lawler and directed by Trevor Dhu at the Old Mild Theatre, Summer of the Seventeenth Doll is considered significant in Australian theatre history because it provided a turning point where Australian life and characters were openly and authentically portrayed.

Two itinerant cane cutters, Barney (played by Buttery) and Roo, have spent the past 16 summers with two women in Melbourne. Every year, Roo has taken a tinsel doll to Olive to symbolise their relationship, but this 17th summer is different.

Summer of the Seventeenth Doll is a well-known and well-loved Australian classic and that�s why it appealed,� Buttery said.

�It�s a strong script and the director has assembled a cast of incredibly talented actors.�

Dhu likens the play to fly-in fly-out workers and the women they meet when they return home as they try to continue a relationship over an extended period.

�The relationships are stretched by time and the untimely weakness of growing older and making a commitment too late between a man and a woman,� he said.

�On the surrounds of all this are friendships and new dominations of youth and regret.

�The ending is not what the lovers intend and the comforts of friendships and homeliness are destroyed � lovers part, and so do friends, and all lose.

�It�s a classic but events like this from the past are still real today,� he said.

This is the third show in a year of all-Australian plays at the Old Mill Theatre to commemorate the centenary of the Gallipoli landing.

THE ESSENTIALS

What: Summer of the Seventeenth Doll

When: 8pm, June 5, 6, 11-13, 17-20 and 2pm, June 14

Where: Old Mill Theatre, South Perth

Tickets: $25 or $20 concession at www.oldmilltheatre.com.au/tickets or on 9367 8719