Joy – Who do you play in the story?
Stan –The play is set in a small country town in regional Australia. I play Sergeant Alf Walker, the local town Cop. Alf has lived his whole life in the town and has become a father figure and mentor to many of the town’s people. He is well loved and respected and he in turn loves and is tied to this place full of the experiences and memories of his life.
Joy – Is your character and the story relatable for you?
Stan –The story focuses on the massive change real estate development brings to a small tight knit community. We see the effects on Alf and one family in particular. Lots of money flowing into the town for property previously regarded as near worthless now causing conflict between young brothers. Do they take the money or keep the land that has been integral to generations of their family? We see the older generational dilemma through Alf himself facing the same decision over his home and also losing his place of work to change.
The play relates directly to what I see happening around us. This story reflects the experience being played out by people and families across Australia today. Beautiful country towns and beachside towns being developed to cash in on our desire for an escape from the city and a better quality lifestyle. But at what expense, what do we lose in the process?
Joy – Would you say the dialogue in verse is more of a challenge than straight dialogue?
Stan – It is more of a challenge to start with but once you get into it and on top of it, the metre, rhythm and rhyme help you with the character’s intention and action. The verse gives you the energy and drive and the poetry transports you. The verse is not always obvious but the audience should just have an awareness that this dialogue is different and be intrigued by it.
Joy – Property (and the acquisition of) is always topical in Australia – to what extent do you think we are defined by it?
Stan – As we see in the play, I think the extent to which we are defined by property acquisition has changed over the last post war generations. In general, The Baby boomers and their parents loved acquiring property and saw this as a mark of success. They felt secure, prosperous and having done the right thing by their families. Their children, my children, are much more interested in work life balance and will acquire a house if it still allows them the freedom to pursue those activities they see as integral to happiness. Owning a house for them is not the main goal.
Joy – What is next for you?
Stan – I have chosen to return to my first love, the stage! Next for me are plays, musicals and cabarets. Oh and also, just between you and I…I’m hoping for an even larger family…. I can’t wait for my first grandchild.
Boy Out of the Country is on from 9 May to 25 May at Bondi Pavilion, for more see: https://companyrogues.com/